Friday, July 18, 2014

[PODCAST] Mouth of Matuszak Radio Show July 18, 2014



Podcast of Mouth of Matuszak Radio Show

July 18, 2014

Topics Discussed:

Rain in Texas
Friday is for accomplishment & preparing to enjoy fruits of labors
Senator Ted Cruz and the border crisis
Obama, Our Military and Our Veterans
Conservative Insurgency by Kurt Schlichter




Live 8-9AM Central Time (US)
Call-in: 520-226-8567 or Grendelwyze on Skype

Leave message to schedule guest appearances or to schedule speaking engagements.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Betrayal and Broken Promises at Brenner Brief

Nobody but Sara Marie Brenner was ever paid for work on the site
Photo Credit: screen capture of BBN "Write for Us" tab

Conservative citizen journalists need to be wary of Sara Marie Brenner or any enterprise she or any of her Limited Liability Corporations (LLC) are attached to.

Brenner is a baby-kissing politician at heart. She makes a lot of promises she cannot keep. If she were an orthodox Jew, she'd be working overtime on Khol Nidre and Yom Kippur.

In February 2014, Brenner recruited many on-the-cusp citizen journalists who were near a point that all it took was the right person to read an article on their blog and they'd get a paying gig. A couple were already getting paid by hit-count at sites like Examiner.com, who pays $7 per 1,000 hits. She wooed writers with promises of pay, pay that never came.

She recruited me promising pay from day one. When the site launched on Feb. 20, 2014, she made an announcement that it would take about 30 days to evaluate what sort of traffic the site received and what the pay rate would be. Her initial promises did not indicate that delay. Yet she cracked her whip demanding content, especially for that launch day.

After the first 30 days, Brenner announced that the site finally qualified for Google AdSense advertising. She would have to wait another month to see what revenue that would garner before paying anybody. So, those plans to delay 30 days, but still pay as promised were delayed another 30 days.With that announcement, I was named Managing Editor of the site. A News Editor was "hired". We were both promised a percentage of the site's revenue rather than just the per-hit payments promised assistant editors and contributors.

This led to one of the more active assistant editors to resign. Kevin Boyd counted on the payments that were delayed, and all his hard work resulted in no compensation. To feed his family, he sought work elsewhere. Other writers soon followed, dedicating less effort to the site or resigning completely.

I hung on for the sake of the other editors and the contributors. I promised to edit their work or find a quality editor who could do the job. With still nearly 30 active contributors including a few who posted multiple stories a day, I selected a couple of great people, Patricia Campion and Matt Lamb, to step in and help.

After 90 days, more and more people asked me about pay. My answer was simple:  I don't handle the money. that is Sara's responsibility. I'm not getting paid, either. It's a new business. Sara's latest plan to pay had changed yet again, and was more along the lines of profit sharing. The problem is, we are listed as independent contractors, therefore not eligible for profit sharing.

And there begins some of Sara's problems. As independent contractors, we get paid for services rendered. The services rendered were essentially raw materials, resources for production. Without our work, she didn't have a product. Paying us for our products, our writings, is technically part of her business expenses, to be paid out before profit is calculated. Despite promises, none of us were ever paid.

From day one, before launch, Sara Marie made promises of actual dollar amounts per hit to some of the writers. One was quoted the same she received at another site. The email quoting that amount serves, legally, potentially, as a binding verbal contract. that of course is subject to various state laws, though, and the final determination is best left to the courts. But, the subject is worthy of a legal review.

It wouldn't be the first time Sara Marie Brenner found herself slapped with a suit for attempting to cheat her employees out of wages. She settled out-of-court on previous lawsuits in past enterprises. Seems that some people never learn from their mistakes. Rule number one, you don't breed loyalty in employees by cheating them or lying to them.

Her broken promises and misrepresentation of intentions don't end with the payment for services the site still promises on its recruitment page. They extend to promises made to affiliates of the site as well.

In moving her radio show to the Brenner Brief News site, she allegedly closed "heartland radio" and established the "Brenner Brief Radio Network". She went and looked to recruit podcasters and online radio personalities to put their show on her network, either live or replays. She offered shows to some of the contributors on the site, myself included.

Sara Marie sent out a laundry list that outlined what each host was responsible to accomplish and what she would do. As her regular fill-in host, I immediately expressed interest. My hopes were to do the daily show instead of the weekly Friday night co-hosting. My family quickly tired of giving up our Friday evenings, including family dinner, for no compensation. Having the perseverance to give the site a full six months to get on its feet and start paying people, I figured the show would be a great way to boost revenue for the site and generate traffic towards my name.

Brenner promised to create bumper music and commercials with companies she already had advertising contracts. I had everything else ready to go within hours, with the exception of a better microphone. That took a week to arrive. A month later, when I asked Brenner what the show's start date would be, she went over the list of what I needed to do. As she went over the list, I said "done, a month ago" after each thing. Then I said, "the only things I'm lacking are the bumper music and the commercials". Her response "I'll do those." I replied, "You said that a month ago. I'm still waiting." She promised them within a week and to tentatively start in two.

Then she told me she was taking a lot of June off and I had to do her show for her. She didn't ask. She didn't check my availability. She knows that family time is important to me and my family. My kid counts on that time, and needs it to nurture her towards greatness. Having no children, Brenner probably has no concept of how important it is for a family to sit, undisturbed, and eat together, and converse. She took it as a personal insult when I told her I could not fill-in for an entire month without adequate preparation.

She never did furnish the bumper music of commercials as promised. She also delayed and shirked getting Jennifer Meadow's show launched on the BBRN. Jennifer had technical problems connecting her show to the site. Brenner couldn't be bothered to provide the "technical assistance" she promises on her recruiting tab. Her idea of technical assistance was to send a cryptic email to her Managing Editor, telling him to do something that she had not given him access to perform on the site. Then she lambasted one of the radio personalities and contributors for going to me for a work-around solution to the issue.

Yet she wanted everything structured. She wanted a schedule of when people would submit news stories, including breaking scoops. She failed to realize that you cannot schedule news. You can schedule commentary, editorials, and other articles. However news happens when it happens the the first to get the story up, with truthful details and fact, wins.

Then she took two months off, sort of. She never informed anybody she was doing as much. She informed me she had returned to teaching piano to make some extra cash since her other day job didn't pan out as she had hoped. So she informed me that she wouldn't be as active. She didn't tell me she was abandoning the site.

Issues arose that were outside of what I perceived as my authority. In some cases she told me she didn't have time (or interest) and to just handle them. Then she would get upset that I did. Others were business decisions. I handled the writers and editors already working with the site. So I emailed her with what I new and put her in contact with those other parties. She didn't respond. Instead, she complained her mailbox was full and set it to automatically forward all BBN related emails to me. So each time I emailed her for guidance on an issue or ti discuss it before making my decision, I received my own emails back, auto-forwarded.

By phone was not better. I left numerous voice-mail messages. None were replied by any medium.

Then, towards the beginning of  June, another site contacted Sara. Larry Lease contributed to both sites. His work at the other site turned out to be fraudulent. He plagiarized the work he submitted there. So Patricia Campion and I investigated. We found that the majority of stories Lease filed with BBN were also plagiarized from other writers, primarily columnists on Yahoo: Voices.

For three days, we had Sara back working with us. Things seemed as though they'd look up. We took a huge dip in content. Larry put up 3-5 stories a day, many in the news category. Finding they were stolen was a huge blow. Sara then promised she'd submit at least one news story a day to get our production back up. She asked I do the same. I did for several days. She submitted none. Another broken promise.

This was the start of her betrayal of site and those contributing there. With the volume of production dropping off, so did our readership. Sara's response? She blamed those still contributing for not promoting the site and everybody's work. When she recruited us, she promised she would handle promotion. Here, she betrayed everybody.

Sara then betrayed confidentiality. As a radio host, ethics dictate you don't give out guests' personal information to other people. In fact, it is pretty bad manners to do that without permission in the first place. It violates the privacy act of 1974. She has the habit of emailing people's phone numbers and personal contact information without permission.

And that was Sara's real sin when she had her Twitter meltdown with Dana and Chris Loesch.

I was working. I was editing stories on BBN. I was considering her offer to turn the site over to me completely. I was writing. I was researching news. I was homeschooling my kid. So I was not actively watching her Twitter feed (and I normally didn't, even when on Twitter). She sent me an email telling me she needed an immediate answer. She asked me to jump in and defend her, on Twitter, against the Loesch supporters.

I happened to agree with Chris and Dana on that subject. So, I posted that Sara Marie's views are her own. I needed to protect BBN, since her name is all over it, and our writers. I tweeted that not everybody at BBN agrees and that her personal views do not reflect the views of the site. After all, she was quitting, anyway.

Then I told her "No". As my wife calls her, Princess Sara sees it as a personal attack against her reign should anybody tell her "no".

Our News Editor, Michelle Ray, resigned over that Twitter battle. She revealed to me that she was working at BBN more to help me out than any loyalty to Sara. However, that last straw made it impossible to have her name anywhere near Brenner's. The next evening, Dana Loesch went on Ray's show to tell her side of the story.

During that exchange, though, Sara broke that ethic of confidence. She gave out Chris Loesch's personal cell phone number, without Chris's permission. Just because she happened to have it because Chris was once a guest on her radio show did not give her the right to share it with anybody, including her husband. The details of the conversation don't matter. What matters is that Sara overstepped boundaries and acted unethically and immorally.

Then, when Jennifer Meadows was taking over the site, Sara spoke ill of me. Somehow, all of her failings were my fault. Somehow, all the work I did on the site was hers to laud, but her direct failings or intentional sabotage were my fault. Luckily, Jennifer asked others on the site and got a different story. We were attempting to set up a conference to get the site back up and moving.

Sara couldn't have that. She took away all of my editorial permissions. This isn't some temper tantrum over lost toys. When she did that, she made it so several contributors could not get their work published. many of those stories still hang, pending, unpublished. She didn't harm me. She harmed them. She betrayed them. She betrayed her own site.

Then she refused to enter into legal contracts with Jennifer regarding the transfer. Sara didn't realize Jennifer's husband is a lawyer. So, Jennifer wanted things done correctly, legally, properly. Jennifer backed out. We spoke afterward, Jennifer telling me her reasons and asking I consider a future relationship should she get a site of her own started in the future. I'd love to work with her.  

Now, Renee Naal is on tap to take over. Renee and I spoke. I'd be willing to work with her on the new site, should she gain full control of it, legally, completely. I did state that I would not be willing to put in the 60 hours a week I dedicated to BBN, though, especially not for free. But I would work on the site and help it, preferably from an editorial level, as a managing editor or similar capacity.

I also cautioned Renee to research Brenner a bit more and to talk to other editors on the site. I recommended she discuss with Jennifer why she backed out of the deal, in case common concerns arose. Renee has a lot of questions she needs answered and a lot of promises to be formalized in a contract before she takes over.

Folks, that is the story, from my perspective, of how Sara Marie Brenner betrayed the contributors and editors of Brenner Brief News with lies, broken promises, and unethical behavior. 

PODCAST Mouth of Matuszak Radio Show July 17, 2014

 

Podcast of Mouth of Matuszak Radio Show

July 17, 2014



Topics Discussed:

Tea Party Immigration Reform anti-amnesty rallies
Arizona Politics (CD-2)
Martha McSally
Chuck Wooten
Obama banning import of AK-47s
Executive Overreach -- recent events in Boehner's suit against Obama

Show live 8-9AM Central, 9-10 ET, 6-7 Pacific
Call in (via skype): 520-226-8567 (or grendelwyze via skype)

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

[PODCAST] Mouth of Matuszak Radio Show July 16, 2014


PODCAST of the Mouth of Matuszak Radio Show ( #MMRS )
July 16, 2014

Topics Discussed:
Border Immigration Crisis
HUMANE Act
Harry Reid Corruption Rumors
Continuing VA Scandal



Live 8-9am Central Time M-F.
Call-in number 520-226-8567 (This is NOT Toll Free)


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

[PODCAST] Mouth of Matuszak Radio Show July 15, 2014

Mouth of Matuszak Radio Show [Podcast] July 15, 2014

Discussed:
Bowe Bergdahl back on duty and getting paid
VA whistleblower harassment
Sex Ed books for kindergarteners
Texas arming teachers
Octomom sentenced for welfare fraud

Show is live from 8 to 9 am M-F. Call-in number 520-226-8567

Leave a comment to contact the host for guest appearances.



Monday, July 14, 2014

Mouth of Matuszak Show Jul 14, 2014


Here is the podcast for the 14-July-2014 Mouth of Matuszak Radio Show (#MMRS)

Topics discussed include the current immigration crisis, charity, second amendment issues, Illinois and Chicago politics, Texas gun laws and True The Vote's ongoing court battle against Mississippi regarding the Cochran-McDaniel primary runoff.

The show currently airs from 8-9 Central Time. Call-in number is 520-226-8567.


Friday, July 11, 2014

Perry maintains pressure on Obama over border, priorities

Perry, Abbott blame Obama Administration for playing politics instead of working on the problem 

 
Gov. Rick Perry attends briefing on border situation | PHOTO CREDIT: Texas Office of the Governor (Public Domain)

AUSTIN, Texas, July 11, 2014 -- Governor Rick Perry maintains pressure on the Obama Administration over border security and the flood of illegal alien minors entering the US.

On July 10, 2014, Perry accompanied several people including news commentator Sean Hannity on a tour of the Rio Grande Valley. This was the day after Perry met with Obama to discuss border issues. Perry urged the President to tour the Rio Grande, the border, and the detention and processing centers currently housing the children. Obama refused the tour but accepted the meeting.

In a statement released on July 9, Perry stated:

Five hundred miles south of here in the Rio Grande Valley there is a humanitarian crisis unfolding that has been created by bad public policy, in particular the failure to secure the border. Securing the border is attainable, and the president needs to commit the resources necessary to get this done.

 Perry forwarded several requests and suggestions to Obama including the following:

• Visit the Texas-Mexico border to witness firsthand the impact of the border crisis;
• Deploy an additional 1,000 National Guard troops to the Texas-Mexico border to immediately enhance border security operations;
• Direct the Federal Aviation Administration to allow the National Guard to utilize Predator drones along the Texas-Mexico border for identifying and tracking human and drug trafficking;
• Medically screen all illegal immigrants to ensure their health and the health of our citizens;
• Direct the Centers for Disease Control or another appropriate federal agency outside the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to conduct, in conjunction with the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS), inspections of facilities in which illegal immigrants, including UACs, are being housed to ensure accepted international and national emergency sheltering standards are met;
• Modify or rescind policies that serve as a magnet to encourage illegal immigration, including:
     • DHS Catch and Release policies by which DHS issues an illegal immigrant an NTA before an immigration judge and releases them. The U.S. Department of Justice reports that 33 percent of those released on their own recognizance failed to appear in FY 2013.
     • Deportation policies and procedures that prohibit UACs from countries other than Mexico and Canada from being immediately repatriated back to their country of origin. After DHS processes these UACs, they are issued an NTA and delivered to a sponsor or relative in the United States, regardless of the relative's immigration status.

To punctuate his stance on the current border issues and the health and humanitarian crisis created by the mass of illegal alien children who entered the US via Texas so far, Perry issued the following editorial:

President Obama's appropriations request only deals with one aspect of the current crisis on our southern border, while barely addressing its root cause: an unsecured border.

Of the $3.7 billion in President Obama's request, only a small fraction is directly dedicated to border security efforts, which are absolutely essential to resolving this crisis, and avoiding more such crises in the future.

Everything else is only treating a symptom of a much-larger problem. And as we know with treating symptoms, the problems will continue until the root cause is resolved.

As governor of Texas, I've been to the border many times, including a June trip to visit a detention facility in McAllen, Texas. The true humanitarian disaster has to be seen to be understood, which is why it's essential the president make his own trip there as soon as possible.

The fact is, this is a crisis created by failed federal policy, and a lack of will to dedicate the resources necessary to secure the border, once and for all.

This has been a problem for a long time. In Texas, we've spent more than $500 million since 2005 to supplement border protection, fighting transnational gangs and drug cartels conducting criminal activities in the border region. With the influx of immigrants further straining the existing federal resources that already weren't sufficient for the job, we've expanded our efforts to combat those elements seeking to take advantage of the situation.

President Obama should make securing the border the top priority in resolving this crisis. To begin with, he should send 1,000 National Guard troops to the Texas-Mexico border to support operations until sufficient Border Patrol agents can be hired, trained and deployed.

He should also direct the Federal Aviation Administration to allow drone flights along the border to identify and track those engaging in drug or human trafficking.

Ignoring the core problem will only cause more hardship, encouraging more people to leave their families and risk their lives to cross a desert in the middle of summer.

My hope is that Congress will expand measures that will enable us to finally secure the border, and that President Obama will sign it into law.

In addition, Texas Attorney General and current GOP candidate for governor Greg Abbott is attempting to file suit against the federal government for damages caused by the current crisis.

Candid conversation with congressional candidate Chuck Wooten


Left-leaning journalists and newspaper editors admit congressional candidate Chuck Wooten is unexpected and refreshing

Carr Canyon, Cochise County, Arizona | PHOTO CREDIT: P-G Matuszak
Carr Canyon, Cochise County, Arizona | PHOTO CREDIT: P-G Matuszak

TUCSON, Ariz., June 10, 2014 — Congressional candidate Chuck Wooten is challenging GOP establishment favorite Martha McSally for the nomination to run against incumbent Ron Barber in Arizona’s second congressional district (CD-2). This is McSally’s third attempt to win the seat. She lost the nomination to Jesse Kelly in the 2012 special election to fill the seat Gabrielle Giffords vacated.

Rumors among 9/12, tea party, and other grassroots organizations allege McSally or some of her more zealous supporters may have torpedoed Kelly’s campaign. Allegedly, voters were told to “stay home” or not to bother sending in their mail-in permanent early voter list (PEVL) ballots. The registered Republican Party turn-out for the overall election in the special race were lower than they were for its primary. McSally garnered the bid to run against Barber in the general election later that year and lost by a two-percent margin.

With the August 26 primary quickly approaching, McSally’s seems confident she’ll garner the nomination. She has the backing of Senator (retired) Kyl, Senator Flake, Senator McCain and House Speaker John Boehner as well as the NRCC. However, her appearances seem limited to fundraisers filled with supporters. Her speeches reportedly barely mention her opposition, concentrating more on Ron Barber. In addition, several local reporters indicated that McSally rarely even discusses key issues, seeming to avoid establishing a platform. In doing so, McSally presents an environment that craves a voice ready to take a stand on those key issues.

Green Valley News and Sun editor Dan Shearer interviewed Chuck Wooten. Shearer found a candidate, and a man, he wasn’t expecting.
Among the bullet points, Wooten says he’s for “the Constitution,” “the Bill of Rights” and “every American’s God-given right to liberty.” He supports “every American’s right to economic freedom” and believes “we are the greatest country on Earth.”
I doubt I’d find one sane American who’d disagree with any of that. So I figured I’d be spending an hour pulling information out of a guy who’d rather skip talking about the details.
I was dead wrong. In the flesh, Chuck Wooten isn’t afraid to take a stand, and even if you don’t agree with him, you have to appreciate that he doesn’t mince words or dodge the issues, as McSally has done on more than one occasion.
Wooten teeters on the edge of what some people call Tea Party Republicanism. He doesn’t scoot over the line but he’s darned close. My guess is he admires a lot of what they stand for but wants to avoid being stereotyped.
Probably not a bad move.
The article is quite complimentary considering its author admittedly leans quite left, especially for Arizona.
This prompted a request for an interview by Brenner Brief News, which US Air Force Command Chief Master Sergeant (retired) Chuck Wooten graciously granted.

Chuck’s opening statement was “I am not a politician,” a fact that quickly became clear. That isn’t to say Chuck doesn’t know how to run a campaign. The latest polls indicate he is gaining on McSally. However, Mr. Wooten firmly states he wants to represent CD2. He makes only two campaign promises. The first is that he will represent the district in DC, not DC to the district. The second is that, if nominated, he will beat Rep. Ron Barber with just the US Constitution.

When asked about McSally, Chuck simply stated that he has people who attend every one of her functions, mostly fundraisers. According to Chuck’s sources, McSally’s speeches are “all about her being a pilot and not about actual leadership.”

Chuck’s current situation is reminiscent of the Jesse Kelly campaign. Kelly was also a non-commissioned officer (NCO), though a Marine. McSally made it a talking point to push the issue that Kelly was an NCO but “not a leader” like she, a commissioned officer. This was one of the talking points her supporters allegedly employed in keeping registered voters home during the overall election against Barber.

Chuck said he learned from Kelly’s campaign, but that this race is different because McSally’s tactics are different. First, McSally does not even recognize Wooten’s candidacy during any public appearance or speech. She underestimates him. Second, McSally changed a good part of her staff on or about June 6 to key campaign staffers and experts recommended by the National Republican Congressional Committee. Given how Eric Cantor’s primary turned out, the NRCC is probably shaken up.

Unlike McSally, Chuck is running his race with a small team of trusted advisers. His platform is one of integrity, honesty, and open answers. There are very few issues upon which it seems he won’t take a stand. His stance on the issues, however, is with those he wishes to represent, in line with the US Constitution. Because of this, Chuck is “not concerned with McSally’s game, but with doing the right thing.”

Wooten is firm on the US Constitution and Tenth Amendment issues. When asked about his stance on the Common Core State Standards Initiative, Chuck is clear.
46 states were essentially bribed by the US government through programs such as No Child Left Behind and Race To The Top. When beholden to the federal government, it’s hard to get out of it and be free and independent. The federal government has no constitutional place or authority in education. It’s a Tenth Amendment issue. When the federal government decided to back [common core], they had no discussion with the two groups they should have consulted — teachers and parents. The whole program smacks of cronyism and corruption
Immigration and border security are vital issues in CD2. The district borders with Mexico along the Huachuca and Coronado Mountains. Douglas and Naco are towns that live in fear of drug cartels and human traffickers. “Rape trees” regularly pop up on ranchers’ properties. Soldiers training on Fort Huachuca regularly find caches of clothing, drugs and water along the land navigation course on the southwest part of the fort. In addition, US citizens tire of US Border Patrol personnel violating the Third and Fourth Amendments by conducting operations on private property without express consent.

Chuck prides himself on being the one of the three primary candidates that has actually taken a hard stance against amnesty, for actual immigration reform, and for increased border security instead of just paying the issue lip service.

Of those willing to immigrate to the US legally, Mr. Wooten welcomes them with open arms. He hopes they “come to integrate” into the US’s “melting pot” culture and enjoy the liberties and opportunities our nation has to offer. He hopes they don’t come “just to change our way of life to be what they left, what they fled. They left it for a reason.”

That leads into Chuck’s views on the Second Amendment and gun control. Chuck stated his personal opinion about Open Carry Texas and similar open-carry advocates’ tactics, Wooten stated that most people “don’t want to intimidate or frighten people unnecessarily, but the choice to carry, openly or concealed, needs to be available and is a matter of personal choice.” Chuck lived in the San Antonio, Texas area for eleven years. He understands the debate in Texas, but is grateful that Arizona is a “constitutional carry state”, meaning no permit is needed to carry a lawfully owned firearm, either openly or concealed.

When asked if he’d support a federal law enacting constitutional carry on a federal level, Wooten said “Absolutely. Law abiding people need the option to choose how they protect themselves and their families, including when traveling across state lines.”

Chuck is not afraid to touch on some of the more controversial issues that can sometimes be the death of a campaign. Chuck made a clear statement regarding various LBGT “issues”. First, Chuck stated that most of these “issues” are not requests for equal rights, but demands for special privileges. On the issue of same-sex marriage, Mr. Wooten stated frankly he has “no [official] position,” adding, “it’s a state issue and should not be a federal issue”. For Chuck, it comes down to the First Amendment and the Tenth Amendment. He’s running for a federal legislative office, not a judge’s bench. “As a Christian, I do believe it is a sin. But not every religion believes that. I can hate the sin, and still love and accept the sinner. It is not my place to judge.”

Given Chuck’s time in the military and the current world situation, Chuck gave his view on sharia law. Wooten spent a lot of time in Europe and the Middle East throughout his life. He was a military brat, then a career in the Air Force, and not works a job that takes him around the globe. He saw, firsthand, the explosion of radical Islam and sharia law in Europe, infiltrating sovereign court structures.
The First Amendment guarantees Muslims’ right to worship peacefully and freely in the US. Our melting pot benefits when the good parts of their culture are integrated with our own.
However, Chuck does not see sharia law as one of those “good parts” and believes it cannot be integrated.
Sharia courts usurp civil law and the rule of law. They contradict the First Amendment by restricting protected freedoms and imposing religious views onto others. They are an imposition of terrorists’ will upon the people. Take the case of the pregnant, well she had the baby, but, woman in Sudan. The whole case is appalling. Religious law must never supplant the rule of law established by the Constitution.

Wooten then cites an area outside of Dearborn, Mich. The town is mostly Muslim. With the exception of the weather, one would think he was transported to a middle eastern, Arabic country if they drove through the town. Chuck feels that if they got out and experienced some of what our country has to offer, they would willingly integrate with the melting pot instead of helping to push collectivism and divisive “diversity”.
It’s just like your time in the military. Think about it. In Germany, you had two types of Soldiers. You had the type who went out into the local culture, got to know it, learned the language, ate the food, blended in. Then you had those who wanted to treat it as though they were still in the states, and wanted everything to conform to US culture. The former usually loved their tours. The latter were usually miserable, spending most of their time in the PXs or the barracks.
Chuck Wooten is still behind in the polls, though he is gaining. Meanwhile, polling still shows Barber and McSally in a dead-heat. Barber is up by one percent, 46 to 45, with a two to six percent margin of error.

Perry continues push for increased border security in Texas


Texas Governor Rick Perry continues push for increased border security, immigration reform with editorial

Young male (16-20) scales border fence near Brownsville, TX. | PHOTO CREDIT: Wiki Commons
Young male (16-20) scales border fence near Brownsville, TX. | PHOTO CREDIT: Wiki Commons

AUSTIN, Texas, June 25, 2014 — Texas Governor Rick Perry continues his push for increased border security and immigration reform with an editorial press release.

On June 23, Senator Ted Cruz, Rep. Mike Burgess, and Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott toured the illegal immigration processing and detention facilities at Lackland Air Force Base, among other locations. Meanwhile, Perry toured other locations including the McAllen detention facility. These facilities house children, minors who made the trek north, illegally crossing the US-Mexico border into Texas. Many of these children made the crossing without adult family members. Some did so without the aid of human traffickers, known as coyotes. Others enlisted coyotes who are known to abuse illegal immigrants, using many as mules to courier illicit drugs or indenturing them into slavery. In the cases of minors, that slavery is often illicit sex trade.

Of the over 160,000 illegal immigrants, captured in the Rio Grande River Valley region of Texas so far this fiscal year, more than 37,000 are children under 18 years of age. The US Border Patrol has detained more than 66, 000 minors this fiscal year, dispersed among Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California. Many of these children come from countries with poor healthcare systems that lack immunizations and facilities for the prevention and treatment of childhood diseases such as rubella, measles and chicken pox. This lead Perry to say:
The staggering rise in the number of individuals crossing the U.S. border illegally represents a profound and major threat to the safety and security of our state and our country. “The federal government needs to act decisively and quickly to end this influx, and ease this suffering.
Upon learning the health and welfare status of many of these minors, Perry, the Texas Speaker of the House, and Lt. Governor David Dewhurst enacted an emergency order allocating $1.3 million a week to the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS). That order directed DPS to conduct “surge operations” along the Texas-Mexico border concentrating on arresting or deterring coyote, sex slaver, and drug cartel operations along the border. Manpower and equipment is reportedly required for these operations as rumors circulate alleging that cartel enlist local Mexican Army units who cross the border and fire upon US Citizens.
On June 20, Perry sent the following letter to Barack Obama:
O-ObamaBarack201406200
Perry’s tour of the detention facilities prompted the governor to write the following op-ed. His impressions and observations merit quoting the editorial in full:
The first thing I saw was a boy crying. Terrified and sobbing against the window of the holding cell, he couldn’t have been more than 12 or 13. The room was full of other young boys, their curious eyes peering out at us as we walked by. These were the ones who made the trip alone.
The room next door was filled to overflowing with mothers and children, some covered in foil blankets, lying on the cement floor. The next room over, empty, except for the garbage that was being swept away in preparation for its next wave of occupants.

When we stepped outside, I heard a baby wailing over the hum of the industrial fans and the steady words of the federal official giving the tour. The sheer number of people in such a small space made it difficult to quickly pinpoint the source, but I finally spotted the baby being held by a young mother in the quarantine area taped off in the back. The otherwise quiet crowd simply stared back at us. The very real human consequences of our country’s lax border security and muddled immigration policies huddled right there, under an open shelter in the stifling Texas heat.

This is the McAllen border patrol detention facility, where men, women and children of all ages who have illegally entered the U.S. are detained and processed. Some are caught attempting to cross the border, while some give themselves over willingly. Many are children from Central America traveling alone, who have paid coyotes to smuggle them through Mexico or made the trip on the tops of freight trains. All have quite literally risked their lives to set foot in our country.

It’s impossible to see these children without wondering how many more were lost somewhere along the way. The desert’s a dangerous place to begin with, even before the worst of summer’s brutal heat arrives, and the border is trafficked by treacherous individuals who see fellow humans as an expendable means to turn a dollar.

What’s happening along our southern border is a mounting tragedy, its root cause Washington’s failure, diplomatically and strategically, to address our border security and illegal immigration problem.

To be clear, the federal officials who operate these facilities daily are doing the best they can with what they have, trying desperately to keep up with a seemingly unending tide of immigrants coming to our border because they’ve heard current U.S. policy will quickly reunite them with loved ones in our country.

This is a complex situation and a growing humanitarian crisis that will require a multifaceted solution. But it’s a situation I fear our president will continue to brush off until he has seen it first-hand.

The U.S. needs to act decisively. First off, the federal government needs to make it crystal clear that attempting to cross our border illegally simply isn’t worth the considerable risk. People in Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras and elsewhere who are considering making the trip need to know that they will be immediately sent back to their country of origin when they’re detained, not sent to various locations across the United States or placed in the care of loved ones.
Secondly, the United States government needs to send more resources to finally, once and for all, secure the border. Federal engagement was insufficient to begin with, and the crush of illegal entrants is draining what resources they had in the area. These gaping holes are just waiting to be exploited by drug cartels and transnational gangs, and create a national security issue as they could be used by people from countries with known terrorist affiliations.

That’s why Texas has directed the state’s Department of Public Safety to amplify its law enforcement operations along the border, targeting the criminals seeking to take advantage of this humanitarian crisis.

This is a problem, however, beyond the scope of just one state. We’ll do what we can, but it’s up to Washington to move quickly to ease the suffering I witnessed Monday afternoon, suffering that is mirrored in federal facilities across the border states.

Until they step up to the task, that suffering will continue, as will the tragedies we don’t even know about taking place on both sides of this unsecured border.
While the conditions, dispositions, health and welfare of these children remain a priority humanitarian concern at both a federal and state level, politicians debate the causes and future courses of action to halt the flood of children across the border. While many contend the debate resides along party lines, individual such as Rep. Henry Cuellar have made statements critical of the Obama Administration’s foreign policy, blaming poor messaging from the executive branch for the current situation. Most of the disagreement resides in what actions to take with those children already in the US. Many feel all the children should be deported. Others feel the actions should be in line with the policies perceived by those in the originating countries — only felons and criminals will be deported. Regardless, the burden of the costs for caring and housing those here already rests on the shoulders of hard-working American taxpayers.

VA Scandal: Temple Texas VA may have sentenced vet to death


Temple Texas VA medical center and Austin, Texas VA pharmacy failures leave Howard Smith fighting for his life

Olin E. Teague Veterans' Medical Center in Temple, TX | PHOTO CREDIT: Dept. Vet. Affairs (public domain)
Olin E. Teague Veterans’ Medical Center in Temple, TX | PHOTO CREDIT: Dept. Vet. Affairs (public domain)

AUSTIN, Texas, June 25, 2014 — Vietnam veteran Howard Smith is in the process of putting his affairs in order. His health is rapidly deteriorating and he feels the Department of Veterans Affairs failed him. The recent revelations of the ongoing VA scandal leave him less optimistic about his future. “I just don’t know who to trust out there, anymore,” said the U.S. Marine Corps veteran in an interview.
My first entry to the VA Health Care system was in 1988 or 89 and my Outpatient Clinic was in Marlin, Texas as the Austin facility wasn’t built as yet. I started going to the Austin VA after my divorce of 2002, my first visit was in early 2004 on a triage walk-in basis. I had Bi-Laterl DVT, they admitted me to Brackenridge Hospital due to the severity.
Howard has been a regular patient at the VA, since. He has been on several medications and pain management programs. It has been rare for him to cancel or miss an appointment. In fact, the only one he recalled was one appointment in 2006 or 2007. His car broke down on the way to the appointment. He called to let them know he was running late. They rescheduled him.  This left him surprised when a clerk remarked that he “missed and rescheduled a lot of appointments”.

As the ongoing investigation into the VA’s “secret waiting lists” revealed, Howard is a victim of one of the “gaming” strategies VA workers employ to “cook the books” so they appear as though no patient waits more than 14 days for an appointment. The strategy the Temple, Texas facility used on Howard is the “kick the can” policy. When appointments are overbooked, a VA worker will reschedule veterans on one of the “secret waiting lists” for an appointment two weeks later, repeating the process until an opening on their unofficial calendar approaches. Several times, Howard was in his car or already at the Olin E. Teague Veterans’ Medical Center in Temple, Texas when he received a phone call “confirming” his cancellation and providing the rescheduled appointment information. “It was the VA rescheduling me. I didn’t cancel these appointments. They did. But the records showed I had called and cancelled.”

Making matters worse, Smith has an aggressive infection affecting his kidneys and lungs. The infection required strong antibiotics when first detected. Since diagnosed, the problem has gotten worse. However, the VA “kicked the can” on his last two consecutive appointments. For somebody with a routine concern, 30-45 days may be nothing more than discomfort. For Howard, though, it could be a death sentence.  Howard has been begging for an appointment since before May 9, 2014, when they started rescheduling his appointments without his consent.

This is the fourth such incidence Howard experienced since November 2013. “They do that. They reschedule my appointment a couple of times, then I’m finally seen. Next they tell me I cancelled a lot of appointments. I didn’t cancel any.”

Howard related more on his history with the VA. After news stories of past VA healthcare system issues in 2003-4, VA care greatly improved, according to Smith. He had few issues or problems receiving treatment or seeing a care provider between 2004 and 2013. In 2013, however, things changed dramatically.

“In September 2013, I took the first vacation in years. While I was gone, my apartment caught fire. The fire and water damage from the fire department destroyed many of my copies of my records”, said Howard. For the past several months, he has fought for the VA to provide copies of just his last two years’ medical records.

Howard’s ordeal reveals other systemic problems with the VA system beyond the scheduling “gaming” and the willful destruction of records discovered several months ago. The VA’s pharmacy, prescription and drug delivery system also requires reform and better oversight. Smith said:
It’s more than just falsifying information, losing records, and waiting lists.
Starting before that fire in 2013, in late 2012, Howard started noticing discrepancies between what he was prescribed and what he received. The first time, the invoice stated he received a full refill of 240 doses of a class II narcotic. Suspicious, he counted the pills. A small prescription bottle containing 40 pills was missing. Howard contacted the VA pharmacy system and reported the problem. Surveillance cameras in the Waco, Texas VA pharmacy discovered that a postal clerk pilfered the pills. But the pharmacy refused to replace those Howard didn’t receive, despite acknowledging they were stolen by a VA employee, without consent of his primary care provider.
This lady told me to talk with the Austin Outpatient Pharmacy Mgr to replace the shorted medications, in which that was done. I went to the old Austin VA Clinic and talked with the VA Patient Advocate, Mr. Tandy Kinard, at that visit Mr. Kinard stated any narcotics missing for whatever reason had to be approved by my primary care doctor, Dr. Tin Tin Wai. When all of this came to a head in early November 2013 and I talked with Dr. Wai, she was not aware of any of the shortages of my Hydrocodone.
As Howard relates, the issue continued:
About three months later after the 40 ct, my, (supposedly) 240 Hydrocodone came in, Certified Return Receipt Requested and it was a 100 ct. bottle short this time. Again I go out to the Austin VA and meet with the Patient Advocate, Mr. Kinard and he called Mr. Matt Garret into his office and I explained the problem of the missing narcotics. Again it was replaced, at the time frame that it would of been needed. The very next month, the very same situation, 1 – 100 ct sealed bottle of Hydrocodone was missing again. My Garrett came into Mr. Kinard’s office and while I was there he called, I assume either the Temple or Waco pharmacy and told them to put all 240 in one large bottle, seal it and double bag it.

Well, for the next two months I received the correct amount of my Hydrocodone, (not in one bottle as Mr. Garrett had requested) but on the next two months straight after getting the correct amount, again a 100 ct bottle, sealed from the pharmaceutical company was shorted. Again I go out to the Austin VA and meet with Mr. Kinard, he notifies MR. Garret. On that visit Mr. Garret ask me to bring in the mailer bag the meds came in in which I did. And once again when it was the time of the month for me to need the other 100 it was replaced by Mr. Garrett, but… without my primary care doctor, Dr. Wai knowing about the shortages, strange.
During my March 2014 visit with Dr. Wai, she called Mr. Matt Garrett into her office for my visit. After the visit was over and me speaking to Mr. Garret about all the shortages he stated, “I only remember replacing 140 Hydrocodone for you”. I told him no, it was a total of 440 missing. On my next meeting with Mr. Garret this time he stated, “I only remember replacing 240 Hydrocodone for you”. After a visit with my Neurologist Dr. Little, (one of the good ones), on May 14th 2014 he increased my Hydrocodone back up to the correct amount of 240 Hydrocodone a month, an amount I have been on since I believe about 2008, somewhere along there.

As when the VA finally, after 4 1/2 months of withholding any pain meds or muscle relaxant, the Hydrocodone was only reinstated at half dosage. Again after talking with Mr. Garrett this time he stated, “Any Hydrocodone I replaced for you came from your refill amount on file”. No mention this time of a total amount replaced, strange. Again I simply don’t know who to trust within the VA and that’s a shame.
Then troubles worsened. “I checked my prescriptions and they told me they expired”, said Howard. He didn’t receive all of his pills during the time. He received no official notification of expiration or a consultation for a refill.

Screen capture of EMR | IMAGE CREDIT: Howard Smith
Screen capture of EMR | IMAGE CREDIT: Howard Smith

Howard made an appointment. The VA turned him away, telling him that he needed lab tests done before they could reissue the prescription. Over three days, Howard had five different batteries of blood tests performed. Next they turned him away again, refusing to refill his prescription because none of the tests were a urinalysis. No urinalysis had been ordered before that, only the blood tests. Howard had the urinalysis. It came back with a positive for THC. One of Howard’s neighbors had offered him some tea that was described as a holistic and herbal pain remedy. It turned out the tea contained a cannabis-like substance. Policy requires a 30-90 day waiting time before a retest in cases of a positive result.

Screen Capture of EMR | IMAGE CREDIT: Howard Smith
Screen Capture of EMR | IMAGE CREDIT: Howard Smith

Now, Howard’s fate rests in the balance, again due to prompt reception on prescription medication. Howard was supposed to receive antibiotics to treat an ongoing, aggressive infection that has now become life-threatening.
The withholding of the antibiotics either from incompetence or whatever from one of my doctors nurses, nurse Rebecca Friday was totally uncalled for. As I did call and speak with her, (7 to 9 days after the 05-23-14 lab test) and advised her of not receiving the antibiotic yet, never heard back from anyone Most likely as I have never met the nurse, she simply seen the tested positive for cannabis and assumed by my age, here is another one of those 60′s or 70′s stoners. Not true, not even close.
After 30 days, the VA admitted a clerical error on behalf of a nurse. She failed to enter the prescription into the automated system. One of the excuses given was that false positive urinalysis. His last two appointments were rescheduled. The antibiotics arrived, possibly too late.
I was withheld much needed antibiotics for 30 straight days and it has caused me much problems especially with my breathing. Last Sunday [June 22 2014], I awoke about 4:30 AM and I didn’t think I was going to make it. I simply could not breathe. There was blood on my pillow. My temperature, though not extremely high, it was 101.8. And upon doing my lab test on 06-23-14 the kidney infection was still showing on my lab test. I waited around the VA for 4 hours waiting to pick up my meds, both my Hydrocodone and the antibiotic, but had to leave due to another appointment. As I was in the VA parking lot getting ready to load my scooter, Dr. Wai’s other nurse, Nurse Stan, (good nurse, compassionate) came out and caught me before I left. He stated he was sorry for the wait, (I truly believe he was) he said to me, “your meds are ready at the pharmacy window.  But that’s not the problem Howard. You have a massive kidney and bladder infection.” He later called, “The day you called and I missed your call”, he stated, “Dr. Wai wanted to do a CT Scan on your abdomen to try and see what is going on.” I see her next Wednesday, July 2nd.
Howard stated his reasons for coming to the press were not selfish. He has attempted every avenue available including state and federal political officials and letters to senior VA officials. Filing official forms and letters to VA executives resulted only in notification of receipt with caveats that processing is delayed due to backlogs. Howard feels it is now too late for him to receive the care he needs. He seeks public awareness so other veterans don’t needlessly suffer the fate that bureaucratic incompetence and systemic failures done unto him.