China Crosses The (9 Dash) Line

China showed their bellicose intentions on Thursday when they stole a US underwater drone.

What Happened

USNS Bowditch

USNS Bowditch

The USNS Bowditch (T-AGS-62) was reportedly operating in international waters approximately 50 nautical miles northwest of Subic Bay in the Philippines.  It was retrieving one of two unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) of the ocean glider type.

Type 922IIIA Ship

While retrieving one of the gliders, the Chinese PRC Navy vessel Nan Jiu 510, a Type 922 Dalang III Class salvage ship, came within 500 yards of the Bowditch and lowered a smaller craft into the water. The smaller craft retrieved the second UUV glider from the water and returned to the main vessel.

The Bowditch made radio contact with the Chinese vessel requesting the return of the UUV.  The Chinese vessel responded to the radio communication with the message that they were returning to normal operations. They then left the area.

Ships Involved

It’s important to understand that the Bowditch is not a warship like a destroyer or battleship.  It’s a scientific research vessel.  Here’s what the Bowditch does:

While the Bowditch is an official U.S. Navy ship, it’s not a warship. The Navy lists the Bowditch as a Pathfinder-class survey ship, used primarily to “support worldwide oceanography programs, including performing acoustical, biological, physical and geophysical surveys,” according to the Military Sealift Command’s website. Essentially, the Bowditch makes maps. Its crew are entirely civilians as well — while the data it collects can be used for both scientific and military purposes, it’s not a combat vessel.

From “Here’s What The USNS Bowditch Does

The PRC Navy ship is likewise not a warship. It is a ship typically used for rescue and salvage operations. The Nan Jiu 510 is assigned to the South Sea Fleet.

Formal Protest

The US isn’t likely to go to war over a $150,000 scientific drone whose design is not classified.  It’s likely that data contained in the vessel is not all that sensitive either.

But that doesn’t make this a minor infraction. It’s a sovereign vessel reportedly labeled as such. That makes this no different than commandeering a manned vessel belonging to the United States. It’s a serious issue.

The US has lodged a formal protest and has demanded the return of the UUV.

China continues to play the martyr and suggest that their military buildup in the South China Sea is purely defensive. Thursday’s action proves that is a crock.

Media Matters running interference on Benghazi

Media Matters had this on their blog today: CNN: Media Outlets Misrepresented White House Benghazi Email

So here’s a question.  Why on earth would anyone trust the opinion of Media Matters when it comes to the ongoing investigation of what transpired in Benghazi?

Are you with me?

At minimum, Hillary Clinton advised Media Matters as a consultant in its founding:

Former chief of staff to president Bill Clinton John Podesta provided office space for Media Matters early in its formation at the Center for American Progress, a Democratic think tank that he had created in 2002.  Hillary Clinton advised Media Matters in its early stages out of a belief that progressives should follow conservatives in forming think tanks and advocacy groups to support their political goals.

Wikipedia

At worst, it’s a front group for Progressives, specifically Hillary Clinton, to take down critics in the media:

Sounds like the junior senator confirmed my contention from Sunday: “Hillary and her backers have created an advocacy network whose expressed goal is to take down all of her critics in the media.
Newsbusters

Even though the truth could be somewhere in the middle, neither of those make Media Matters an unbiased opinion on Benghazi, especially if Clinton still has eyes on the White House in 2016 (which I have no doubt she does).

Pelosi’s warped view of liberty

Nancy Pelosi defended Obamacare today, connecting it to the Declaration of Independence. [Read more…]

Morgan Freeman says Obama should “get pissed off”

Morgan Freeman has some advice for Barack Obama – get pissed off.  He said Obama has been horribly sandbagged.

Sadly, Freeman is a brilliant actor, but not very astute when it comes to recognizing executive incompetence.

Connecticut teachers union caught with their pants down

This article at the Washington Examiner gives us some insight into how the American Federation of Teachers Union was recently exposed for what they are – a union whose main priority is maintaining its power structure, NOT educating children:

American Federation of Teachers officials have disavowed an internal report after it was posted on the union’s website following its annual conference, embedded on each of its 19 pages with the union’s logo and signed by a union official.

Though the union’s biggest concern is not serving children or parents, it cannot have the public aware of this, or that its strategy includes the “absence of charter school and parent groups from the table” during political shenanigans that simultaneously target lawmakers with lobbying pressure while appearing to “[discuss] shared concerns” with parent and reform groups.

The union says it learned from past “mistakes” to avoid “inflammatory rhetoric” and the appearance of “saying ‘no.'” So, instead, it preaches “collaboration” and “allowing teachers to have a voice,” while working behind the scenes to make sure no one but the union does.

It’s a sad truth, but one Americans must understand: Teachers unions don’t fight for children. And that’s not why teachers join them. Teachers, as much as they love children and their jobs, know unions provide excellent job insurance.

Unions know that to increase their political influence, they must respond to the self-interest of dues-paying members, not some altruistic concern for children or teaching excellence.

Read more at the Washington Examiner: http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/op-eds/2011/08/teachers-union-disavows-internal-memo-endorsing-deception-parents#ixzz1UB78adWR

A cursory search of the American Federation of Teachers web site really didn’t turn up any additional information (other than the usual commie union drivel…  BUT, AntiPinko has obtained a copy of the presentation in question.  If you want to read it, download it here.

Stories of the absurd

AARP CEO claims that they are strictly nonpartisan (you have got to be kidding me)

Twice as many Americans work for the government than manufacturing (one word – bloat)

Elementary school teacher charged with sending death threats to WI state lawmakers (what happened to the new civility? Oh, wait, if it’s violent rhetoric against republicans, that ok.)

Volt sales in March more than January and February combined (they’ve sold 1210 Volts YTD.  Compare that to 50,000 Cruze.  And yet the Volt comes with a $7500 government rebate.)

Emperor Obama decrees that all federal vehicles be advanced technology (green compliant) by 2015 (yeah, when it’s not your money, who cares what it costs?)

Flashback: Obama would rather be a really good one term president than a two term president (newsflash Barack: if the majority kicks you to the curb, you weren’t “really good.”)

Obama finance (il)logic

President Obama is saying that there is little sense in defunding NPR and PBS because it’s not a lot of money:

President Obama defended public broadcasting from cuts on Friday, emphasizing that defunding networks like NPR and PBS would do little to rein in spending. – The Hill

Unfortunately, this is akin to a family on the verge of bankruptcy saying, “well, we are underwater by tens of thousands of dollars.  We are about to loose our house, and our monthly payments for the mortgage and other debt is in the thousands of dollars per month.  But since my cable bill is only $60/month, we are going to keep that.”

To that family, most reasonable people would say, “Listen, you have got to get ALL of your spending under control.  You have mismanaged your money.  Get your house in order in every area.  Then we can talk about what might be appropriate and what isn’t.”

But Obama doesn’t see it that way.  And why should he?  The money he’s spending (or wants to spend) isn’t really his.  (I will say that, in so far as he is also a taxpayer, a very small portion of it is his money.  But, you know what I mean.)

Civil debate vs violent rhetoric

Just so we are all clear on where things stand, if it comes from a Republican or Conservative, it is decried as violent and/or heated rhetoric and is therefore decried as a threat.  But if that violent rhetoric comes from a liberal, progressive, or union, it’s part of the democratic process and it’s OK.

Visual proof that American Communists are violent

Insightful words

The words of Wisconsin GOP State Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald are a perfect description of the Democrats behavior:

“Don’t let their complete absence fool you; the Senate Democrats forced that vote yesterday,” Mr. Fitzgerald said in a statement. “They forced it three weeks ago, when they abandoned their jobs and fled to Illinois for a long-term vacation.”

He added: “And today, they’re ‘shocked’ that a decision was made without them in the room. Yesterday’s actions shouldn’t surprise anyone, much less any parent in Wisconsin. We know that sometimes, throwing a fit doesn’t get you what you want.” – NY Times