The Crusades

Life of Illusion requested that this article be brought up for discussion.  Since religion has been such a hot topic as of late,  this should provide some interesting changes in the thinking of many, especially those who want to blame Christianity for the violence and death in the past.   This article was origanally posted here:

One of the idiocies passed off for decades among Western historians is bemoaning the Crusades as evil. The Islamic world — the Ummah — has disseminated this imaginary charge against the West, and like fools, we have absorbed Arab lies and taken the blame to heart. But the most superficial reading of Western history should put that canard to rest.

Shortly before he died in June 632 AD, Mohammed ordered Muslims to prepare to wage war against the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire.

Upon his death, Mohammed’s successor, Abu Bakr, planned to fulfill those instructions. Plans were also made to conquer Zoroastrian Sassanid Persia.

This vainglorious troop of bandits should have been easily dispatched,

However. Persia and Byzantine Rome had just come out of a savagely vicious war which ended in 628 AD. Emperor Heraclius had finally imposed the total defeat over Persia that had eluded the earlier Roman Republic and the Caesars — but Byzantine Rome, though victorious, was severely mauled. Persia was reduced to a state of anarchy; and forced to pay indemnities to Constantinople.

The Persian and Eastern Roman empires were attacked almost simultaneously around 633 AD, while both were still licking their wounds. So frightening were the Islamic advances that these former blood enemies made a sadly futile alliance. By 644, Persia fell anyway.

By 634 AD, Byzantine Palestine and Syria were being attacked. The Battle of Yarmouk in August 636 AD would see Eastern Roman forces beaten. Emperor Heraclius, the victorious warrior, a mere 8 years earlier, would have to sneak out back to Constantinople in a boat.

Farewell, a long farewell to Syria, my fair province. Thou art an infidel’s (enemy’s) now. Peace be with you, O’ Syria — what a beautiful land you will be for the enemy hands — Emperor Heraclius, after the defeat at Yarmouk.

Roman-held Jerusalem was besieged in November 636 AD, and surrendered by the following April.

By 674 AD, the Muslims had taken Egypt and much of Anatolian Turkey, and were besieging Constantinople. The Byzantine Romans, unlike the Persians, still had some fight left and managed to lift the siege using Greek fire, a fearsome weapon similar to a flamethrower.

By 709 AD, all of Christian North Africa had fallen to Islam. Though it took the Muslims centuries, eventually all of Christianity was eliminated in the Maghreb.

In 711 AD, the Muslims invaded Spain, again taking advantage of weakness caused by internecine wars. It would be 781 years before Spain would be free. Among Islamic Andalusia’s contributions to civilization were the demanded tribute of 100 white virgins every year to staff their harems. Every other contribution was plagiarized from other civilizations the Muslims had plundered.

By 732, the Muslims had advanced to central France, where they were finally repelled by Franks at the battle of Tours. Western Europe had been temporarily spared.

Sicily fell under Islamic rule for almost two centuries, until finally liberated by Norman Franks around 1091 AD.
According to tradition, Malta fell to Islam in 870 AD. Islam’s contribution’s to local culture was piracy. Malta became a staging point for predatory raids on Southern Europe.

After two centuries, Malta was finally retaken in 1091 AD.

Later on, historians would blame the Dark Ages on the Germanic Tribes, but the Goths and Vikings readily Christianized and embraced the higher civilization of the lands they conquered. The reality is that Islamic raiding is what produced the Dark Ages. Trade and the economy collapsed under the Muslim threat, plunging Europe into stagnation.

In 1095, after centuries of Muslim aggression, Pope Urban II finally had enough, and called Christians to war. He did so after the Byzantine Empire, now broken away from Roman Catholicism, appealed for fraternal help from the Western Christians to save them from Islam. After over 4 centuries of war with Islam, the Byzantines were on the verge of collapse. Most of Spain was still under Islamic tyranny. Malta and Sicily had only been recently freed.

One may condemn the atrocities of the Crusaders, but what infuriates the objective student of history is that the far greater crimes of Islam are ignored.

The Crusades was Christendom finally fighting back, not always honorably, but against a foe which had plunged Europe into darkness for centuries.

CrusadersInstead we allowed our students to be brainwashed, and force fed an Islamic line that we have to feel guilty. The Muslims invaded Southern Europe, yet somehow we Westerners are labeled the imperialists.

Islamic aggression did not end with the Crusades.

The reason Columbus headed West was because the Muslims had blocked all trade routes to the East. Yet, we are never told this.

Up until the 16th century, Italy was regularly invaded by Islam. Otranto was taken by the Turks in 1480, and held for only 10 months. Yet, it was time enough to behead over 800 Christians who refused to convert.

Piracy and kidnapping was so common that Catholic Churches in Southern Europe had donation boxes where the faithful could contribute to ransom hostages.

One could go on and on. The Islamic subjugation of Greece and the Balkans. The kidnapping of hundreds of thousands of Christian boys, over the centuries, to be forcibly converted to Islam, and compelled to serve in the Ottoman Army as Janissaries.

The Islamic attempt to take Vienna. Twice! In 1529 and 1683.

A half million or more slaves from the British Isles were kidnapped on the high seas by the religion of peace.
It was not until the U.S. Marines took on the Barbary Pirates and the French razed Algeria that Islamic predation finally stopped in the 19th century; but all of this is forgotten. Somehow, white Christians are the only villains now.

We hear the Muslims bewail about British imperialism; but the British do not want to go back to Egypt. The Muslim do want Andulasia back. We hear about French crimes in Algeria — which were real — but do we remember that Islamic predation that was the real agent which caused the Dark Ages. Europeans were in North Africa for only a century, but Islam pounded Europe for 1200 years. Yet, it is the Arabs who claim victim status.

But what do our politicians do, but apologize for the Crusades. Why?! Have the Muslims apologized for 1400 years of their crimes?!

Part of this idiocy stems from a hyper-liberal view of history which views European Christianity as inherently evil. It permeates the culture of academia; and refuses to see the real evil of Islam.

Sadly, a second cause is an ancillary residue of historiography which has a tradition of exaggerating the real crimes of Catholicism out of all proportion. The Spanish call this exaggeration the Black Legend of the Inquisition; and it results in a pseudo-acquittal of Islam, by blaming the Crusades on Catholicism.

Let us not forget that it was Catholic Europe which insulated Northwest European Protestants from Islam’s full fury. It was Catholic Spain which eventually broke the Turkish fleet at the Battle of Lepanto in 1571. It was Catholic Poland’s Jan Sobieski who saved Northwest Europe at Vienna in 1683 AD. It was the Catholic French who tamed Algeria in 1830.

Let us not forget either that it was Catholic France which saved the Christians of Lebanon in 1860 while the Protestant British were arming the Druze.

The time for apologizing to Islam must end.

Mike Konrad is the pen name of an American who is neither Jewish, Latin, nor Arab. He runs a website,, where he discusses the subculture of Arabs in Latin America. He wishes his Spanish were better.

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  1. 🙂 Wouldn’t it be nice to go a whole day without a personal attack or name calling? In due time, it will be the norm to have respectful discourse.

  2. Michelle Obama: “Barack knows that we are going to have to make sacrifices; we are going to have to change our conversation; we’re going to have to change our traditions, our history; we’re going to have to move into a different place as a nation.”

    • Just A Citizen says:

      That statement gets creepier every time I read it.

    • Real meaning, Barack intends for you, the people, to make sacrifices and change your thinking. He will re-write history, change the meaning of words and concepts until you conform to his vision! Meanwhile, if we forget to bring our dog with us on vacation, we will send a special military aircraft to fetch him on you, the taxpayer’s dime!

  3. I think the “religion of peace” needs to first stop making war on itself. Then maybe they can figure out how to live peacefully with the rest of us….

  4. Just A Citizen says:


    Re; the video on using fire as an economic weapon.

    This is not new first of all. It has been attempted by many groups, including Japan, in the past.

    There has been no evidence I know of linking Al Qaida to any of the fires in the west. He claims they caught some in Calif. so maybe that is true. But noting reported on all the others. Notice he said “I believe”. He never said “I have proof” or “it has been proven”.

    Arson has been a problem forever. Especially during hard economic times. People used to start fires to get hired on to fight the fires.

    Many of us were predicting the current “fire conditions” in the 70’s. So his report of “ten years” ago was late to the game.

    The issue with tanker planes is not due to the “cheapism culture” in the Federal Agencies. The large “super tankers” he is referencing are of little use to much of the area affected by wildfires. But the real underlying issue is Congress’ failure to allocate funds requested to replace the tanker fleet.

    Flying around with IR 24/7 isn’t going to be any more affective at detecting fires than our current warning system. Not in reality. But notice the real purpose is to spot the PEOPLE who start the fire. Which of course means that they can spot ALL PEOPLE in the woods ALL THE TIME. This guy just rationalized the use of DRONES 24/7.

    And just so folks know, the federal agencies fly infra-red flights during huge wildfire outbreaks when the smoke gets to thick to see the ground from the air or lookouts.

    As the kidnapper just found out when he ran to Idaho. WE DON”T NEED NO STINKING DRONES to catch the bad guys.

    • Side Note: We have a mountain getaway home in Jemez Springs, New Mexico…..the lst four fires in New Mexico, which included the largest fire ever in New Mexico, the Los Alamos fire, the Santa Fe fire and the most recent Jemez fire…..all started with lightning.

      My son, was a smoke jumper for five years….until he wised up. But he has never heard of anything like that video.

    • I am aware of the Japanese balloon attacks. I actually am surprised that the Jihadists have not tried this in a large scale manner. A half dozen drivers driving up and down the west slope of the Sierras with a pack of cigarettes could start enough fires at one time to overwhelm the fire crews.

  5. @ Mathius……….HOLY COW……you live in a state that charges 10 cents for a friggin paper sack? Signs on the highway that says…..bring in you dangerous guns for a $50 dollar gift card…$200 for very dangerous assault weapons? ( This is in the San Francisco area ) And you have the guts to ridicule TEXAS? Sigh………………………………

    I might mention that kayaking in the bay around Alcatraz…..that is some COOOOOLLLLDDD water……..

  6. Regarding Hagar and Ishmael, the father of Islam.

    Gen 16:11-12 “And the Angel of the Lord said to her: “Behold, you are with child, and you shall bear a son. You shall call his name Ishmael, because the Lord has heard your affliction. He shall be a wild man; His hand shall be against every man, and every man’s hand against him. and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren.”…”

  7. Noir at the Bar

    Sunday I read from a W-I-P;
    At a bar called Shade, like it’s under a tree.

    It’ll be from Tommy Red, from Baltimore Noir;
    I says to him, I says, where the fuck do I park my car?

    Because last time I was there, in Mike Bloomberg’s town;
    I got a ticket for stopping, not parking, that rich clown
    charged me more than enough, like one-sixty-five.
    To stop for ten seconds? Why, the fuck why?

    Homeland security? Give me a break.
    I was picking up my wife, not ordering a steak.

    So it’s been a couple years, since we indulged the big apple.
    One-sixty-five is, like, I don’t know, thirty cases of Diet Snapple?

    The joint they call Shade isn’t far from where I lived;
    In Little Italy and/or Greenwich Vill …
    I used to roll posters at the head shop Night Owl;
    Around the corner from Reggio where the hippies would howl,
    when the espresso they were guzzling caught fire in their blood;
    and they’d run to Washington Square Park to dance in the mud.

    Momma Stella lived on Bedford, then Bleeker when she was a kid;
    I fed pigeons at Father Demo Square from the benches where I’d sit
    with Grandpa Pete and a bottle of Manhattan Special (nitroglycerin in a bottle);
    then I’d go home and not sleep for two days and get throttled
    by Poppa Tommy, my father, before he fled the scene;
    for Gang Bang and riches of which he could only dream.

    So come one and come all, to the bar they call Shade;
    Listen to some writers spew from our trade.
    Support your local bookstores and bars while you’re there;
    And don’t forget the waiters, waitresses and bartenders—show you care.
    And never give worry about the next mayor or our nation;
    Just be smart and trust me, take public transportation.

    And if Mayor Mike is anxious to squeeze me for more coin;
    I’ll guaran-fuckin-tee him, next time I won’t return.
    Because I’ve been there and done that, the town of Manhattan;
    It’s beautiful downtown Fords, New Jersey, where I’m getting fat at.

    Come check us out this Sunday night at the bar they call Shade;
    Six PM, in the Village, on Sullivan and West Third.

    —Knucklespeare …

  8. Let me put it this way, my jaw hit the floor. Earlier this week I was able to screen a portion of this Friday’s Fox News documentary “The Great Food Stamp Binge,” hosted by Bret Baier. It airs Friday at 10 p.m. and Sunday at 9 p.m. ET on the Fox News Channel. This investigation focuses on a federal program called SNAP, or “Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.”

    Once upon a time this was called food stamps, but the modern world is all about branding and image, not accuracy or substance. Thus, a snappy new name was needed.

    All this change is a direct result of the Obama administration’s surreptitious undermining of the law in the Stimulus Act in 2009 and the disingenuous gutting of President Clinton’s overwhelmingly successful Welfare Reform law. This was achieved by administrative fiat in 2010.

    As I watched the rough cut with Fox Editor-at-Large Peter Boyer, I found myself at a loss for words.

    I don’t know whether I was more saddened, or angered by the interview John Roberts did with an apparently healthy “surfer” who happily lives a life of leisure in Southern California subsidized by the taxpayer.

    It was simply mindboggling to listen to this grown man explain the logic he uses to justify taking food aid — and thus free food — rather than working and paying for it himself.

    This great government giveaway is being undertaken and I can’t help but believe those that truly need help are still going hungry.

    As we continued to watch I began to see what was behind the SNAP program. It is about changing the mentality of the nation, of Americans.

    Take this example, from “The Great Food Stamp Binge,” of what is nothing short of social engineering or reeducation. In North Carolina social workers actually got an award for breaking down the “Mountain Pride” that makes some from that state reluctant or unwilling to take handouts. They actively fought the tradition of tightening your belt and taking care of yourself when times get tough.

    There is much more in this excellent program — it is a thought provoking, well told story and I urge you to watch it.

    Read more:

  9. off topic, but then again this is SUFA and nothing is truly off topic.

    NY Times:

    Unease at Clinton Foundation Over Finances and Ambitions

    “It ran multimillion-dollar deficits for several years, despite vast amounts of money flowing in.”

    This isn’t surprising, it is ran by progressives, correct? I mean, that’s how they are running our national finances.

    In the coming weeks, the foundation, long Mr. Clinton’s domain since its formation in 2001, will become the nerve center of Hillary Rodham Clinton’s increasingly busy public life.

    Yup, this is a preview of who the sheeple are going to put into the White House in 2016.

  10. Bottom Line says:

    The issue isn’t about which religion is more or less violent, but rather that people categorize their beliefs into religions (over-sized cults) and use it as a justification for control or conquest.

    Radical Christians scare me as much as radical Muslims or Jews or New Agers or Pagans or Satanists, etc. Any zealous radical behavior motivated by ‘god’ is cult-like and scary IMHO.

    What is about wonderment and philosophy, questions regarding our origins and purpose, etc…has turned into mega cults with armies fighting and arguing over who is ‘right’, pushing their culture and beliefs onto others, etc.

    Human ego, religion, and weapons are a recipe for disaster.

    • Agreed on many points does not change the dynamic though of Islam rampant was aggressive warfare and the Crusades were defensive. It does not matter how they were “sold” anymore than the recruiting in WW 1 to stop the barbarian “Hun”. and save civilization. Bottom line, (no pun intended) they were both defensive in response to naked aggression.

      As an aside, for those of us fascinated by military history who nonetheless tear up when reading names on the local war memorials (such lost potential) it is amazing to me that less than 100 years after the Germans started the bloodbath of the20th century, they accomplished all their goals (except perhaps for the subjugation of Britain) through peaceful means and smart financial moves.

    • BL, I believe that religion was just a sorry ass excuse for humans to be humans. History, and common day occurences, say something very telling, humans are barbaric in nature. Humans are animals, they desire domination, like all animals. To blame religion is just lying and not understanding what humans really are!

      • Bottom Line says:

        There is a lot of truth to that G.

        Not with everyone, of course. There are a lot of people that understand what religion and spirituality are really about. The issue is those who succumb to their own worst nature, which is true in more than just a religious context.

        It is common for people to attach their ego to everything, whether it be politics, religion, their new car or khakis, etc. So when an idea which has been taught for generations is challenged or threatened in some way, people see it as a threat to their very being.

        Ego is not logical, and it is deeply engrained within our thought process. If not governed, it promotes a win/lose over others rather than a win/win.

        That’s why I like the Golden Rule so much. It switches a person’s Id with the Super Ego. Instead of considering your own needs, you are considering others. It causes people to put themselves into the position of others, thus having a better understanding of their position, their win. It works toward a win/win.

        So does Live and Let Live. Because it is also based upon respect of others.

        Whenever you add human ego to idealism, then back it up with force, you create a conflict of interest that will eventually lead to disaster.

        For example…

        People collect into political and ideological groups in favor of their way of life. …Which is fine. The issue comes when you add force. They vote to have their way forced onto others, and so starts the conflict.

        How many counties in the US regulate or prohibit liquor sales on Sunday? What is the significance of Sunday? Why not other days?

        How many people in the US do not care about the Christian sabbath?

        How do you think people across the US would react to grocery stores shutting down for times of fasting during Yom Kippur or Ramadan?

        The gay marriage issue is another good example. Gay people can’t get married because someone’s god has been inserted into law and says they are wrong…and/or Christians are having to accept a legal definition of marriage that differs from their religious definition.

        If you were a lesbian, would you want someone forcing/telling you how to live according to their values system? If you were a Christian, would you want someone forcing/telling you how to define marriage?

        So take force out of the equation and replace it with live and let live and the golden rule. What happens?

        And that is just in the USA. What about all the other violations of humanity, in other parts of the world, that are motivated by ego and ‘god’?

  11. Religion is often used as a mask to cover the real driving force behind the aggression. The force is more often greed and thirst for power. Religion is used as a tool to excite the masses. The Spanish conquest of Central and South America is often cited as the desire to save soles but behind the scenes it was driven by gold, silver, land and personal power and prestige that was denied the non-first born sons of the elites in old Europe.

    • T, that’s how they worked up support for what they did. In a way, not much different from the Colonial British using the “white man’s burden” to justify what they were doing. Convenient, very convenient. I would suspect that there were a whole bunch of Muslims who looked beyond their religion in their thirst for conquest but used the religion part, the need to bring enlightenment to the infidel to gin up the masses.

      Afterthought, I think Smedley Butler, USMC felt that way about our banana wars when he penned “War is a Racket”. Many within and without the Republican Party accused the Progressives and Theodore Roosevelt of the same.

  12. Nicely done article. Better than anything it points out the psychological illness of people who would stand history on its head because they want to believe that their skin color, religion, or culture is inherently bad. I have referred to these people as self-hating______________ (fill in the blank).

    What i would really like to explore is the why, their motivation. There is something in all of us that seems to root for the underdog. Even when the underdog is wrong or evil like our little Boston bombing friends, because they are the “little guy”, there are those who start the excuse machine, long before the facts are in and idolize the poor boys. .

    The attacks on Bill O’Reilly these past two weeks over his pointing out what is so wrong about black ghetto culture have actually been dwarfed I think by the urgent need of every single news outlet to hide the controversy. Why? I think again it is the sympathy that is held for perceived underdog victims.

    What is so missing in all of this is the abysmal lack of knowledge. No one remembers rampant Islam, so much stronger at its height than the weak, divided Europeans. No one remembers that the black communality in the United States, certainly in the North, mirrored the white. That blacks were not always the underdog, that they did break out of poverty and into the middle class and that they did hold close the same values that allowed whites to succeed.

    Along the way, everything gets excused. From the excesses of Communism (it represents the poor) to the inherent mysoginiism of Islam, to the lame excuses for 13 year olds to have babies by “men” who count their manhood by the number of females they impregnate. Excuses, excuses, excuses yet, as the above article points out who would ever excuse the Dominican and Jesuit priests who ran the inquisition but were a part of a church and religion that saved western civilization?

  13. Just A Citizen says:

    FROM MY EMAIL today. Enjoy.

    On the first day, God created the dog and said, “Sit all day by the door of
    your house and bark at anyone who comes in or walks past. For this, I will
    give you a life span of twenty years.”

    The dog said, “That’s a long time to be barking. How about only ten years
    and I’ll give you back the other ten?” And God saw it was good.

    On the second day, God created the monkey and said, “Entertain people, do
    tricks, and make them laugh. For this, I’ll give you a twenty-year life

    The monkey said, “Monkey tricks for twenty years? That’s a pretty long time
    to perform. How about I give you back ten like the dog did?” And God, again
    saw it was good.

    On the third day, God created the cow and said, “You must go into the field
    with the farmer all day long and suffer under the sun, have calves and give
    milk to support the farmer’s family. For this, I will give you a life span
    of sixty years.”

    The cow said, “That’s kind of a tough life you want me to live for sixty
    years. How about twenty and I’ll give back the other forty?”
    And God agreed it was good.

    On the fourth day, God created humans and said, “Eat, sleep, play, marry and
    enjoy your life. For this, I’ll give you twenty years.”

    But the human said, “Only twenty years? Could you possibly give me my
    twenty, the forty the cow gave back, the ten the monkey gave back, and the
    ten the dog gave back; that makes eighty, okay?” “Okay,” said God, “You
    asked for it.”

    So that is why for our first twenty years, we eat, sleep, play and enjoy
    ourselves. For the next forty years, we slave in the sun to support our
    family. For the next ten years, we do monkey tricks to entertain the
    grandchildren. And for the last ten years, we sit on the front porch and
    bark at everyone.

    Life has now been explained to you. There is no need to thank me for this
    valuable information. I’m doing it as a public service.
    If you are looking for me I will be on the front porch.

  14. Stephan,
    I read the articles-You asked my opinion but I guess the main question is, is there ever a reason good enough to allow abortion. I suspect that different people would have different answers for when it should and shouldn’t be allowed-that to me is the biggest problem with man thinking they have the right to decide who’s life is worth living and who’s aren’t. As a human I see situations that make me wonder for a moment or two whether or not a person would be better off dead but then I realize I can’t really answer that question, I don’t have the right to answer that question. So in the end, the question really is, do the parents have the right to kill their unborn child because they can’t handle the responsibilities the child’s birth will make on their lives-a fear I understand and I sympathize with but still do not believe validates killing innocent children.

    Just something to think about:
    Should the people that lost limbs during the Boston bombing been left to die because they didn’t have all their limbs anymore-how about soldiers or the guy who played Superman or Stephen Hawkings?

    Is abortion ever really about the well being of the child or is it always based on the well being of the adults involved-does abortion give us the right to simply make decisions about another person’s life that we would never make if it concerned a person already born?

    • All fascinating questions. I was 15 when I first read those articles. They have stayed with me ever since. I guess after the first twenty years, after my own children were born I finally came down on the side that I can’t condone but I can understand.

      There are things in life than make you wonder. Also back in the early ’60’s there was a one hour lawyer program called the “Defenders”. The plot of one episode, supposedly based on something that really happened involved the lawyers defending a Doctor who delivered a premature baby. Despite the fact that he knew that exposure to pure oxygen would blind the baby, he went ahead and put the child in an incubator with 100% oxygen to save the baby’s life. This was right around the time JFK and his wife lost Patrick their newborn to Hylan membrane disease (a lung ailment). Anyway, twenty years later the young man, a college student, sued the Doctor for malpractice. The questioning revealed that the doctor, on his own took the responsibility and the judge, with regret, found for the plaintiff. At the end of the show, one of the lawyers asked the kid if he really understood that the alternative was death. Would he have preferred that? He only answered that he knew. I never forgot that ending either. It too has plagued me for fifty or so years.

      In the long run, I think life is worth it and I thank God every day that i have never had to make the kind of call that these people made. I think I would do the right thing but I don’t know.

      Thanks for commenting.

      • I certainly agree with your comment-I can’t condone but I understand. I know, to a lot of people my comments Sound heartless but I just want people to realize they are talking about a human being, their child and I don’t believe that most people would be thinking let my child die-if they were hurt in an accident after they were born. So why do they think kill my child when they realize something is wrong with them in the womb.

        The young man, sounds like he just needed someone to blame.A very human reaction. I suspect he didn’t really want to die-lets face it, if he wanted too-he could. And if he didn’t feel he could or maybe that he shouldn’t-why would he hold someone else responsible for not doing what he his self will not do.

  15. Bottom Line says:


    Twice I have tried to post on this thread with no result.

    • Seems you have a computer problem. I had one awhile back, had to take it in for fixin 🙂

    • Just A Citizen says:


      Did you change your email lately?? Your address looks like one of those hidden commercial sites. Your comments were sent to the SPAM box as a result.

  16. Just A Citizen says:

    GREAT ARTICLE from of all places Huffington Post.

    How to Demilitarize our Police Force. A topic we discussed here at SUFA long ago, but one that is still necessary. It also fits T-Ray’s theme of lets identify solutions. This article includes a pretty good list.

    The only action missing is the key step. Make sure you elect local politicians and police chiefs who understand the problem and support these changes.

  17. So, now that the troll is gone … where are all the new commentators?

    Hurry and recruit …

  18. Just A Citizen says:

    Why Jerusalem belongs to the JEWS and not the Palestinians, I mean Muslims.

  19. Just A Citizen says:

    More ACTION to solve problems. This one is close to T-Ray himself.

    • This story is several weeks old. Apparently the forest service police were allowed to enforce state and local law. When the sheriff needed help, he could call upon the forest service. Unfortunately the forest service has not been responding. Also they have been harassing law abiding citizens in the forest, hence the removal of there authority to enforce state and local law. There is a running battle here with the forestry department over access to federal lands. They are closing large sections of the forest to vehicular traffic. Thus individuals who have been driving to their favorite camping sites are now bared. That includes the handicapped. The closures come from law suits by environmentalists.

  20. Million Muslim march planned for 9-11-2013…….I hope it is successful. Please march. Better yet…come on down and march in Texas.

  21. Any of yous sufa-ites in the area, stop in and I’ll buy yous a beer (or two) …

    Noir at the Bar (this Sunday) … Romantic History … Knucklespeare … Outside the MFA Bubble … Evelyn Amelia … Chef of the Future …

  22. @Matt, I was right!

    USA Today Finds Home Solar Panels Not Cost-Effective

    By Mike Ciandella | August 15, 2013

    Are solar panels are the way to a bright future of clean energy – or the way to an empty bank account?

    On Aug. 14, USA Today profiled a man who built solar panels in his backyard to demonstrate the inefficiency and high costs of solar energy as well as the taxpayer-funded government subsidies he got in the process.

    According to the article, Rochester, N.Y. resident Jeffrey Punton installed the solar panels in the backyard of his home for a combined personal and government subsidized price of $42,480. This price doesn’t include maintenance. Punton received $29,500 in government subsidies to install them, which he calls as a “foolish investment.”

    In fact, the whole reason he set up this solar panel contraption was as a testament to government waste. “I don’t think it’s a smart investment to pay someone three times what they’re putting in,” Punton said in the article.

    He has saved money on his energy bills, but no where near enough to make back the costs to himself and taxpayers. He saves only “several hundred dollars a year” on his energy bills.

    USA Today’s willingness to tell Punton’s story is a rarity, among media often hyping solar power. The media have pushed carbon taxes in order to promote green energy solutions. CBS “Evening News” on March 6, 2007, pushed a similar concept to the one Punton tried: a solar power initiative in California. The initiative would end up costing environmentally conscience homeowners who installed the panels about $18,000 – and that’s after factoring in a $5,000 state rebate check.

    Read more:

    • If you do the math on the majority of the “green” technologies, they do not make sense. Any technology that requires significant government subsidy just to break even is not worth the investment. Add to that that the fact that solar and wind need rapid start backup facilities to compensate for the intermittent nature of sun and wind. We would be much better off working on the next generation of nuclear fission reactors such as the LiF2 thorium reactor.

      They have been pushing solar since the Carter administration. That is over 30 years ago. It is still not economically viable despite 30 years of investment in R&D and production. It is time to cut our losses and move on to something that is viable.

      • I’m with you 100%. A while back, Matt was considering installing solar panels at his home. I advised him he would never recoup his investment, the math just doesn’t work out. I think we would gain the most benefit by re-processing nuclear fuel….Not that I’m against more advanced reactors either. And other green news….

        Likely-bankrupt Ecotality was ‘nearly bankrupt’ before it got stimulus dollars

        Ecotality is facing possible bankruptcy, as “neither the company’s direct sales force nor the independent dealers have generated sales volumes of its commercial [Electric Vehicle Service Equipment] products sufficient … to support the company’s operations in the second half of 2013,” according to its Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

        And Ecotality was also near bankruptcy in 2009 — before it was approved for a $100 million stimulus grant from the Obama administration to install electric car chargers across the country.

        “Ecotality was nearly bankrupt before the stimulus grant money was awarded by [the Department of Energy],” said Maryland Republican Rep. Andy Harris in a committee hearing last year, adding that the company was saved when it entered into a joint venture with Chinese investors to set up a subsidiary in China.

        Those Chinese investors agreed to pay Ecotality executives $1 million in bonuses if they were able to secure taxpayer dollars that were being handed out by the Obama administration in the stimulus package.

        “The company hired lobbyists to engage the White House on DOE projects, went on to be awarded $100 million in Stimulus funding, and the Chinese-funded performance bonuses were awarded,” Harris added. “Within a few months of the award, the company’s president was an honored guest of the first lady at the 2010 State of the Union.”

        The company was also investigated by the Securities Exchange Commission, according to Harris, for insider trading while the DOE was still giving it taxpayer dollars.

        “About nine months after that, the SEC initiated an investigation into potential insider trading by company executives associated with the award,” Harris said. “During the time period of this investigation, DOE continued to expand the scope of Ecotality’s award and even awarded a new $26 million grant to the company in July 2011.”

        Read more:

  23. Egypt, I do not like what is happening, but think I see some positives. The military seems to be trying to walk a line, insisting on rule by law. The have not seized power, even though they have shown they have the ability. They ousted Morsi when it became apparent he intended to ignore their constitution and become a dictator. The protesters they are killing might be a good thing as well. These are the same people that rape reporters and any females that dare to appear in public.

    One thing this does demonstrate, every time the US meddles in the Middle East, it doesn’t end well for us or them…. I do wish the military was more active in protecting the innocents.

  24. If anyone does not fully understand what is happening in Egypt…and Syria…..I stand ready to explain it.

    • Just A Citizen says:


      I think I have Egypt but am still confused over your comments on Syria the other day.

      That is that the Russians are playing both sides.

      If this is true then why are not the Russians being vilified in the ME Press or the Western Press for their “presence” in the ME???

      I do have a question on the history of Syria and maybe you don’t know the answer. I couldn’t never figure out why we did not form a “friendly” relationship with Syria.

      Was it all because of Israel?

    • Pretty sure I don’t understand. Seems different factions of Muslims want power & are happy to kill each other or anyone to get it. Some of the players are foreign powers. They may want to influence a result for religious or economic advantage.

      I think to “understand”, you have to separate foreign & domestic actors.
      On foreign actors, separate the religious and economic. The US & Russia both have interest in Syria. China & France are also interested.


    • Please do D13.

    • Please do Colonel!

      • Let us all blame Woodrow Wilson and the progressives. Everything that has gone on these past 93 years is the result of the Treaty at Versailles. The breaking up of the Ottoman Empire created two problems a total power vacuum in the region which still exists and the scramble by European states to divvy up the goodies in the Near East.

        Historians are, I guess because we are coming up on the 100th anniversary, and everybody involved is long dead, proposing with honest evaluations. Read something the other day for the first time that Pershing was totally pissed that we did not demand an unconditional surrender, commenting that in a few years we would have to do it again. Every time I look at some of those borders in the mid-east on the map i wonder what those fools were thinking in Paris.

      • Ditto that

  25. Just A Citizen says:

    Continuation of the REPUBLICAN LEADERSHIP is stupid enough to lose the election. Only now we have stupid enough to destroy their own party.

    And this idiot has not idea what he just did.

    “Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus on Thursday forcefully condemned “self-deportation,” the policy of making life for undocumented immigrants so difficult that they voluntarily leave the United States.

    “Using the word ‘self-deportation’ — it’s a horrific comment to make,” the RNC chairman reportedly said to Business Insider. “I don’t think it has anything to do with our party. When someone makes those comments, obviously, it’s racist.””

    If this isn’t fixed pretty soon we may have a ONE PARTY Federal Electorate in the near future.

  26. I LOVE this family. God, Guns, Family. Hey Oprah? Is it still about race? The redneck took it in stride..just shook it off…no whining..maybe you could take some notes.

    NYC Hotel Kicks Out ‘Duck Dynasty’ Star After Confusing Him For Homeless Man

    • Yeah, I need to start watching this show. Wonder if the previous seasons are available so I can catch up. Loved how he called it “facial profiling”.

      • Just A Citizen says:


        If you have one of those cable companies, like Comcast Infiinity, they keep entire seasons on record for you to access.

        A&E ran a spot last night saying they had the entire 3rd season available On Demand.

        Other than that option I haven’t seen and DVD’s or such.

  27. Just A Citizen says:
  28. Ok, for those interested…I will pen together an article on it….and, some Kudos, to Steven… partly does go back to that……..

    At JAC……..Russia is also advising the Muslim Brotherhood as well…but not militarily. I will explain this as well…..people have a tendency to think that the Muslim Brotherhood is an Islamic faction like Al Qaeda……it is not…..the Muslim Brotherhood is a mafia.

    In addition, in Syria, I cannot explain why the Western media is not reporting it…it is known…the Spetz is boots on the ground and so is our SF.

    Reminds me of a mission in Laos…Sept 1970….there was a young lad from Texas leading an SF team in a sneek and peek foray hunting SAM sites. ( these mobile sites were troublesome for our aircraft stationed in Ubon Thailand. ) on this bright sunny day, this team locates a mobile site……contacts appropriate personnel, transmits coordinates, digs deep holes, and awaits the “Kaboom”……after the Kabooms…..the body count was necessary. Upon inspection, wouldn’t you know it…..all Spetz and Russian techs….not a single North Vietnamese around…..nor a Laotian soldier. Of course, none of this was acknowledged by western media….nor our government. The same thing is happening here but on a much grander scale.

  29. I am still having issues with posting, so I changed my name and email address.


    A few weeks ago, you accused me of being ‘snappy lately’. You are absolutely right. I apologize to you and others if I have caused any grief.

    Please understand, I am in a bit of a predicament that I am still trying to fully understand, and have been a bit stressed.

    V, FLP, others,

    I know I have been a little abrasive with regard to Christianity. I don’t mean to offend.

    You see, I have discovered some things that puts all of what we know as human history into question, and is somehow directly related to Christianity and Judaism. It is imperative that I figure this out. So I have invested a bit of time into trying to determine the definitions and relevance of different religious interpretations, as well as how people respond to different religious related stimuli.

    The response that I have received (especially from Fundamentalist Christians) has often been very unreasonable and arrogant. It is rather frustrating sometimes. So please accept my apology.

    To be honest, I am rather concerned FOR Christians and my homeland.

    There are 220+ million Christians in the USA. 100+ million are fundamentalists or evangelicals. 50+ million are armed, many of which are rather zealous in regard to their beliefs.

    What I know has the potential to upset them in a big way.

    • Oh hell no, apology necessary. Hope you find your piece of mind. If you ever get people figured out let us know the secret. Cheers brother 😉

      • Thanks, Anita.

        I know secrets. I could share …but likely not without consequence.

        My piece of mind is in finding Alice, …whoever she is. I think she’ll know.

        Otherwise, I just want off of this planet.

  30. Sounds like what Simon ran into on the Son Tay raid to free the POW’s.

  31. So last night who shows up at The Shade Bar to see and hear Bubbles do his thing? The Stepheninator! Mr. Trynosky … what a nice guy … he does your wingies a service … I have a bucket list proposal … we all hook up at a barbecue some day … I’ll bring the eye-talian stuff … yous bring the beer … Grazie, Stephen … my sons and wife think you’re the man. It was GREAT meeting you. And one of my sons, Dustin, now lives a few blocks from where Stephen once lived … pretty cool, yous ask me.

  32. Such kind words! Actually, I can’t see how those nice people could possibly be related to our Charlie. Joking aside , it was a good night. Did something I have not done before and enjoyed it immensely. Charlie, good for his word sprung for a couple of beers which I also appreciated.

    Ditto’s on the get-together. Next spring my eldest goes to Ft. Leavenworth for a stint at command and staff school. Since it is the geographic center of the country (almost) perhaps we can meet in his back yard.

    It is a small world. Charlie’s son now lives three blocks from where I grew up and two blocks from where my newly married son has his apartment.

    Charlie’s reading, from something he is working on involves a conversation between a hit man and the guy who sets up deals for him. Earthy and spot on.

  33. Just A Citizen says:

    Oh, you have to love the irony of it all.

    • Yep, Chomsky is right … about all of it (which has been NBC edited out) … not to worry, JAC, he abhors what Palin stands for, too … the problem is they aren’t all that far apart, Palin and Obama … they both support the great evil of capitalism … and that’s not me stirring the pot. 🙂

    • Funny! Love the comments.

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