Monday, June 27, 2016

When you are surrounded by Heroes...It is damned difficult to not perform like one! *

So, Juvat, you've been writing about Medal of Honor recipients for a while.  Who was the Air Force's First Medal of Honor awarded to?

Interesting question, Grasshopper! As with all interesting questions, the answer depends on what the definition of "is" is.  No wait, that's not right!  This isn't a story about lying under oath.  

The answer depends on whether you're asking who was the first airman who received the Medal, the first Airman who received the Medal, the first person in the United States Air Force who received the Medal  or the person who received the first United States Air Force Medal of Honor.  

Turns out there are 4 correct answers.  In order, they are:

1. Lt. Frank Luke in 1919.
2. A1C  William H. Pitsenbarger in 2000 for actions taken in April 1966.
3. Maj. Louis Sebille in 1953 for actions taken in August 1950.  The Air Force Medal of Honor hadn't been authorized by Congress yet.  Major Sebille received the Army Medal of Honor.
4. Maj. Bernie Fisher in January of 1967 for actions taken in March 1966.

Having been through Luke AFB twice for RTU, I'm familiar with Lt. Luke's story.  I will write a post about him at some point in time.  A1C Pitsenbarger's story can be read here, and IMHO, the Airman is a very worthy recipient.  Major Fisher will also be covered in some future post.  Today, we'll be learning more about Major Louis J. Sebille.

Up until deciding on which name on this monument to talk about this week, I had little knowledge about Major Sebille.  His name rang a small bell in that while assigned to the 18TFW at Kadena, I'd lived in Sebille Manor, a section of housing there.  As far as I know, there was no monument or other information about the man or why the area was named for him.  
Major Louis J. Sebille
Source

As it turns out, I was pretty much surrounded by aspects of the man.

Seems Major Sebille had seen action in WWII as a B-26 Pilot flying a total of 68 missions, receiving a pair of Distinguished Flying Crosses.  Between the wars, he had a short career as an airline pilot, but jumped at the change to return to the military, eventually becoming checked out in both the F-51 and the F-80 Shooting Star.  
Major Sebille and the F-80 Shooting Star
Source


As a side note, I thought it interesting that the rest of his career he would fly the two aircraft interchangeably.  Jets and Propeller planes have entirely different flying characteristics, tendencies, quirks and vulnerabilities.  It must have been an interesting time to be a pilot.

When the Korean War kicks off in late June 1950, Major Sebille is assigned as the Commander of the 67th Fighter Bomber Squadron 18th Fighter Bomber Wing.  There's one of those Venn Circles closing in.  The Wing at Kadena was the 18TFW and the 67th TFS was a part of it.  

As the early stages of the war go very badly for the UN forces, the ground forces are being forced back towards the coastal city of Pusan (now Busan).  Air Forces are conducting operations out of Japan as well as airfields around Taegu, Pusan and Kimhae.  The North Koreans have advanced all the way to the Naktong River which is the last major topographical barrier between them and the Tsushima Straits and winning the war.
The blackline roughly (as carefully as I could photoshop) follows the Naktong from Taegu to KimHae.


On September 4th, 1950, the North Koreans manage to establish a beach head across the Naktong River and start to bring forces across for what they hope will be the final push.  This is spotted by a FAC and aircraft are vectored in to attack the breach.  Major Sebille is leading a three ship of F-51s loaded with Bombs, Rockets and Machine Guns.  

Major Sebille begins the attack from about 5000' planning to drop both bombs on the first pass.  He hits the pickle button at about 2500' and begins a left hand pull to avoid the frag pattern.  (Later procedures would have a higher release and a level pull to avoid that pattern.) However during the delivery only one bomb releases.  The 500 lb bomb on the wing coupled with what probably is a 4g pull results in a 2000Lb imbalance on the wing.  Regaining control of the aircraft takes him even lower where he is hit by ground fire.  The aircraft is leaking coolant, which as any afficiado of Mustangs knows, is usually fatal to the aircraft as the engine will seize in short order.  In any case, he's advised to try to make an emergency landing at Taegu.  
After Action Mission Report


Here's where the story starts breaking up.  The facts are that he radios back "No, I'll never make it.  I'm going back and get that bastard!"  He then turns around and rolls in again, firing all 6 rockets at the armored vehicles in the target convoy.  Once expended, he continues the dive while shooting his machine guns, ultimately crashing into the lead armored personnel carrier with the aircraft, destroying it.

Seems that after the action, some commanders felt that this was more of a kamikaze attack rather than a valorous action.  This post goes into greater detail and I think the author's final few paragraphs are interesting.  Essentially, he questions "who is the braver?", one who sacrifices his life during battle, or one who knows his limitations yet continually reenters combat in spite of them.

I have no idea what the answer is to that question.  My response probably would be "Both!".  Suffice it to say, I believe Major Sebille recognized the strategic importance of stopping the North Korean advance at the Naktong, right there, right then.  His ability to enhance that outcome could only be accomplished by continuing his attack and destroying his target, rather than retreating and attempting to return later.  I am not going to question that decision.  He made it, and paid the consequences.  

Rest in peace, Warrior!

Major Sebille's Citation:
Maj. Sebille, distinguished himself by conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. During an attack on a camouflaged area containing a concentration of enemy troops, artillery, and armored vehicles, Maj. Sebille's F-51 aircraft was severely damaged by antiaircraft fire. Although fully cognizant of the short period he could remain airborne, he deliberately ignored the possibility of survival by abandoning the aircraft or by crash landing, and continued his attack against the enemy forces threatening the security of friendly ground troops. In his determination to inflict maximum damage upon the enemy, Maj. Sebille again exposed himself to the intense fire of enemy gun batteries and dived on the target to his death. The superior leadership, daring, and selfless devotion to duty which he displayed in the execution of an extremely dangerous mission were an inspiration to both his subordinates and superiors and reflect the highest credit upon himself, the U.S. Air Force, and the armed forces of the United Nations.

* Quote from Duane "Bud" Biteman, LtCol USAF

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Nature, Red in Tooth and Claw*

Great Blue Heron (Source)
And apparently "red in beak" as well.

As many long time readers know, there is a pond at Chez Sarge. It once was home to many fish, both large and small. Of the koi and goldfish clans they were.

Then one fall we noticed large aquatic waterfowl in the area, of the heron and egret variety, not unusual for a coastal town with lots of water and salt marshes about. We also noticed that we were missing some fish!

So, in accordance with advice from our local fish pond experts, we purchased netting which was spread over the pond in the fall and stayed until spring. The experts assumed that it was the migratory birds flying about which had spotted our pond and assumed that it was a "fast food" emporium. No need to hunt, just stop in and grab and go.

The net worked, no losses of fish.

Then last year some strange malady killed all of the koi. Every. Last. One.

Didn't impact the goldfish at all, just the koi. We lost many a fish which had graced the pond from it's beginnings.

Goldie. A whale of a fish, a good 12 inches long!

Jumper. So named for his tendency to leap out of the holding tank onto the lawn while we were doing spring cleaning in the main pond.

Spaz. So named for the panic which always ensued for no apparent reason. Normally she was fine, every now and then she would freak out and dash for cover. Panicking all of the other fish as well.

Leo. So named for his leopard-like speckled coloring.

They all died. That really sucked.

Then this last Friday afternoon I went out to feed the goldfish. There were none to be seen except for one lone fish who was hiding under the pump intake. He immediately dashed into the weeds upon my approach.

'Twas then that I noted that breakfast was still floating around, unconsumed. Odd that.

I searched but could see no fish, no fish at all.

There I was, Saturday morning, out to dump some recycling when this great bloody feathered dinosaur lifted off from where it had been standing in the yard. Next to my bloody pond!

It's the wrong time of year, says I. Apparently that effing heron needs to buy a calendar.

Damn it.

All the fish, save one, are gone. Fish we've had for over five years.

All gone except that little orange one near the top left.
(Yes, I'm rather pissed about it.)

Time to break out the nets again.

The Missus Herself says it would be a bad idea to set up an anti-heron radar and missile system in the backyard.

"Not even a few anti-heron guns?"

"Not a one."

Freaking Nature....

Update:

Four more survivors were found Saturday evening! There are five left, and I had to chase that feathered dinosaur off two more times yesterday. The neighbor's dog Hercules provided a very loud assist.






*Who trusted God was love indeed
And love Creation's final law
Tho' Nature, red in tooth and claw
With ravine, shriek'd against his creed
"In Memoriam A.H.H." - Alfred, Lord Tennyson Canto 56

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Brexit

If you are Hungarian, don't look at this... (Source)
Unless you've been living under a rock for the past few days (which I wish I could get away with) you know that the United Kingdom (more properly the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) has voted to leave the European Union. Which isn't so much an alliance, or a union per se, but an economic entity. As the "source of all knowledge" (sic) says -
The European Union (EU) is a politico-economic union of 28 member states that are located primarily in Europe. It covers an area of 4,324,782 sq km (1,669,808 sq mi), with an estimated population of over 508 million. It operates through a hybrid system of supranational and intergovernmental decision-making. Its institutions are the European Council, the Council of the European Union, the European Parliament, the European Commission, the Court of Justice of the European Union, the European Central Bank, and the European Court of Auditors. W
Now I pinched that opening graphic from a Wikipedia article about something called Euroscepticism. Long story short -
Euroscepticism (also known as EU-scepticism or anti-EUism) is criticism of, or opposition to, the European Union (EU). Traditionally, the main source of Euroscepticism has been the notion that integration weakens the nation state, and a desire to slow, halt or reverse integration within the EU. Other views often held by Eurosceptics include perceptions of a democratic deficit in the European Union or a belief that it is too bureaucratic. Euroscepticism should not be confused with anti-Europeanism, which refers to the rejection of the culture of Europe and Europeanisation, and sentiments, opinions and discrimination against European ethnic groups. A Eurobarometer survey of EU citizens in 2009 showed that support for membership of the EU was lowest in Latvia, the United Kingdom, and Hungary. Euroscepticism is found in political parties across the political spectrum; however, the rise in radical right-wing parties in Europe is strongly linked to a rise in Euroscepticism in the continent.
I was stationed in Germany after the borders "came down." There was still a border crossing kiosk on the edge of the village we lived in, which was on the Dutch border. It was most convenient to travel back and forth to work via a short cut through the Netherlands than it was to take the "long way" staying totally within Germany.

Ditto when traveling to the nearest U.S. bases at Bitburg and Spangdahlem which led one through the Netherlands, then Belgium, before crossing back into Germany via the Schnee Eifel.

Entering la belle France still required the checking of papers and the like in 1992. A trip to the UK when The WSO was in the sixth grade (which would make it 1996 by my reckoning) required the checking of passports in Dover at the British terminus of the Chunnel (said marvel I got to ride through there and back again).

Now in an age of terrorism and wandering hoards of ne'er-do-wells (who may or may not harbor terrorists in their midst) it seems a bad idea to just let folks wander about one's countryside without a "by your leave."

As it seems wicked easy to get into Europe along its southern flanks (and I can tell you, Italian airport security looks completely lame next to French airport security, I can hardly imagine what Greek security is like), then once you've wandered onto the continent, no doubt having been provided a complementary cup of ouzo at the border, you are now, to paraphrase the old Southwest ad, "free to move about the continent."

Now the Brits have always seemed to me a rather sensible folk. They are under heavy pressure from an influx of Muslims into the country and they've been getting rather tired of the bureaucrats in Brussels trying to run the whole show.

And having said "Eurocrats" making rather a dog's breakfast of the whole thing to boot!

So it's understandable that they would want out of the EU. As Americans I think the best we can do is be supportive of our British cousins, not rush to judgement about the "wisdom" of their move or anything like that. It's their country, they want it back.

I understand that.

Oh boy, do I understand that.

While I have no dog in this hunt I can say this, I think it's the right move.

Sweden, Denmark, Netherlands? (I do believe they are contemplating a similar move.) You know what to do...






Friday, June 24, 2016

The Friday Flyby - June 2016

Colonel Benjamin O. Davis, Jr.*, commander of the 51st FIW, leads a formation of F-86F Sabres during the Korean War, 1953. (Source)
After a while, a fella can get mighty sick of politics and all the bull crap currently in the news. I have reached that point of saturation. So until I can see some cool aircraft videos I'm going to hold a sit-in here at Chez Sarge...

Oh wait, I'm not five years old (more like twelve, nor am I a Congress critter, but I digress).

Now Juvat talked about the Sabre on Monday, and as the F-86 has always been a favorite of mine, I figured it was time she had her own Friday Flyby.

I can still remember the thrill I got on my first trip to Kunsan AB in Korea and beheld those lovely birds wearing camouflage and the livery of the 대한민국  공군 (Republic of Korea Air Force, aka ROKAF).

She's not a big aircraft, measuring 37 feet, 1 inch long, with a wingspan of  37 feet, and just a shade over 14 feet high, from the ground to top of the canopy. The first time I saw one sitting next to the mighty F-4D Phantom (on the engine test hardstand at Kunsan) the Sabre looked like a toy. The Rhino (F-4E version, the D is similar) measures 63 feet from the tip of the radome to the tail, has a wingspan of over 38 feet and is 16 and a half feet high. Almost twice as long as the Sabre and two feet taller. (I found it odd that they have a similar wing span, no doubt Juvat can explain all about wing loading and two massive engines versus one smaller engine. I can't, I just fix 'em, I don't fly 'em. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!)

I did get a few photos of Udvar-Hazy's Sabre, sitting next to her Korean War adversary the MiG-15.




As you can see by my dearth of photos of this lovely bird, I need to get back to Dulles with my new camera. While the hangar housing the collection is huge, there are a lot of aircraft crammed in there. So I was in aircraft-overload, I basically did the camera version of "spray and pray," hoping I got shots of everything. Well, I was close. Not enough detail shots of the birds I particularly enjoy. (Yes, I know Murph, that would be "all of them." Oh yeah, chase that link, you won't be disappointed!)

Now I did find some pretty sweet Tube O' You videos of the -86. The first one is modern, a taxi, fly it around, isn't she pretty, video.



The second is from 1955, I was two, Juvat was still a gleam in Daddy Juvat's eye, and Old NFO was boldly patrolling the North Atlantic in his Neptune, I'm sure. (One of these days he's going to get Murph and I in the same room and kick our asses, I'm sure of that as well!)

Lockheed SP-2H Neptune (BuNo 135588) of VP-7, "Black Falcons". This aircraft was assigned to VP-7 at NAS Jacksonville, from 1965 to 1967.
(No, Old NFO didn't actually crew these, but Joe's brother did!)
(Source)

Anyhoo, the second video is of the USAFE flight demonstration team, the Skyblazers. (The Skyblazers were the USAF demonstration team representing the United States Air Forces Europe (USAFE) from the late 1940s through the 1950s. This team was formed in early 1949 by a group of 22d Fighter Squadron pilots from the 36th Fighter Wing at Fürstenfeldbruck Air Base in Germany. At this time they were flying Lockheed F-80B Shooting Stars. The unit transitioned to the F-84E in 1950, the F-86F in 1955 and the F-100C in 1956. Two of the original Skyblazer team members, identical twins C.A. "Bill" and C.C. "Buck" Pattillo, went on to become members of the first Thunderbird team.
The Patillo brothers. (Source)

Unlike the Thunderbirds, the Skyblazers seldom appeared outside of the realm of USAFE operations in Europe. The Skyblazers were disbanded in January 1962 when their home squadron was rotated back to the United States and their assigned aircraft transitioned to the F-105 Thunderchief. - Source)



You can read an old Stars & Stripes article (from 1960, with photos) about the Skyblazers, here.

Now I have to say a couple of things about the third video. These days we get a lot of squadrons producing their own videos. With the advent of high quality, compact, digital cameras, there are a lot of in cockpit flying videos out there. Naval aviation squadron cruise videos, Hornet Ball, and Strike Fighter Ball videos tend to be excellent. (Though yes, many have musical sound tracks which Buck found so annoying, YMMV. For me it depends on the actual music used. Yeah, I prefer jet noise and radio chatter but ya pays your nickel, ya takes your chances. Okay, actually it's free, courtesy of the Tube O' You.)

Before I forget, the videos produced by the Air Force squadrons who win the Raytheon Trophy tend to be frigging awesome as well. (Thou must Google that thyself, for my fingers tire and the night is full of terror... Oops, wrong video.)  I have posted those before, and will again. 

Now this video was done all the way back in Nineteen Hundred and Fifty-Three, the year which saw Your Humble Scribe begin his time on old Mother Earth and even Old NFO was nobbut a lad. Now it does have kinda cheesy music but it is altogether excellent.

And hysterical. Have I ever mentioned that fighter pilots have senses of humor to match their ginormous (and well-deserved) egos? Shoe clerks find nothing funny. There are no shoe clerks in the following video.

And no hamsters were harmed during production...



And ya gotta love the squadron's nickname. No way that would fly in today's PC environment.

More's the pity.







* Benjamin Oliver Davis Jr. (December 18, 1912 – July 4, 2002) was an American United States Air Force general and commander of the World War II Tuskegee Airmen. He was the first African-American general officer in the United States Air Force.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Spoiled Brats, We Are Governed by Spoiled Brats

(Source)
A sit-in on the House floor...
Several dozen U.S. House Democrats pushing for action on gun control protested on the floor of the House of Representatives on Wednesday, chanting "no bill, no break!" and demanding that the chamber put off an upcoming recess until legislation is debated. (Source)
When you don't have a majority in the House apparently this is how you get action if you're a Democrat. You throw a temper tantrum. You sit down on the House floor until your "demands" are met. And Shrillary has stated that she approves, this, in her fetid swamp of a brain, is what "leadership" looks like. Shows me that she is definitely not qualified for the office she is seeking.

When will we, the American people, remind those idiotic, petulant, entitled morons in Washington D.C. that they are most emphatically not our leaders. They are our representatives, they work  for us.

Meanwhile Breitbart has reported that "White House press secretary Josh Earnest intimated Tuesday that Republicans are cowards for opposing Monday’s gun control proposals." (Source)

So essentially, progressive elements in the United States government, in both the Executive and Legislative branches are upset that Republicans want to (finally) uphold the Constitution of the United States.

Rather than try to find ways to defeat Islamic terrorism, they wish to disarm the American people. Is that what they seek? It sure appears that way to me.

Here's something the progressives in the White House and on the floor (literally) of the House should make themselves familiar with first, the oaths they swore upon entering office -
“The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.”  U.S. Constitution, Article VI, clause 3
The oath noted in Article VI of the Constitution is defined in U.S. law as follows -
Title 5 U.S. Code § 3331 - Oath of office (Source)
An individual, except the President, elected or appointed to an office of honor or profit in the civil service or uniformed services, shall take the following oath: “I, AB, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.” This section does not affect other oaths required by law.
The oath sworn by the President of the United States is explicitly spelled out in the Constitution in Article II II, Section One, Clause 8 (Source) -
Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation:—"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."
Once they have familiarized themselves with what they swore to do, they should read this section of U.S. law -
Title 18 U.S. Code § 2381 - Treason (Source)
Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason and shall suffer death, or shall be imprisoned not less than five years and fined under this title but not less than $10,000; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States.
By seeking to disarm the American people, I would argue that these fools in government are providing aid and comfort to the enemies of this country. One of whom just slaughtered 49 innocent civilians and injured 53 more in the fair city of Orlando. Before you argue that the asswipe who perpetrated that atrocity was an American citizen, reread the part of the oath which states "all enemies, foreign and domestic."

I'm sure our enemies overseas are rooting for those nitwits on the House floor. As for me, I would charge them with treason. I do believe a case could be made for that.

(Source)





Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Ouch

(Source)
There may or may not be another post today.

Tuesday afternoon was a trip to the dentist to get a wisdom tooth removed. (I have a story about my wisdom teeth, I nearly went to war with the dental clinic at Lowry AFB in Denver back in '82-'83 time frame, I'll regale you with that tale someday. POCIR.)

In the meantime, a different tooth which I had had a root canal done on some time ago (shortly after the last woolly mammoth had perished) decided last year that a crack down in that defunct root would be just the thing. Doc said, "If that starts to bother you, it'll have to  come out..."

Yes. It has started to bother me. So I figured, since the oral surgeon is going to be rooting around in there anyway...

Yeah.

Ouch.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Update:


Okay, so apparently I am actually a giant wuss. I am providing this update to a yet to be published post after extraction of a single wisdom tooth. The anesthetic has yet to wear off and The Missus Herself is off to the pharmacy to get me some pharmaceuticals which are advertised as somewhat heavy duty pain killers.

I sit here typing, trying not to drool blood all over my shirt front even though I have what feels like a giant wad of gauze in my mouth. It's not that big, it just feels like it. No doubt that's the anesthetic. I feel it my duty to keep you, Our Loyal Readers, informed and up to date as to the state of my oral health. Or something.

As I sit here, I can feel the pain starting to make itself noticed. It's not quite there yet, just over the horizon so to speak. I breathlessly await the cavalry who must be, I hope, bearing pain killers.

Actually the Doc was quite good. Hardly felt a thing when he was pulling the tooth, not even pressure, just minor electrical impulses as though the nerve was saying, "Hey! Hey, brain! HEY BRAIN THERE'S SOME METAL THING HERE RIPPING A TOOTH OUT OF OUR JAW!!! Ain't you gonna scream or something?"

"Hello? Earth to brain! Hello?"

Okay, it wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. And it was just the one tooth, Doc said to hold off on the other one as it wasn't that bad. Truth be told, the niggling little twinge I felt when brushing my teeth pre-extraction wasn't as bad as the "Oh my God, what was that, did that hurt or what?" I felt last night.


We shall see, we shall see.

I confess, I am a total wimp when it comes to dentistry. Sad innit?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Second Update:


Gauze is out and I am sans gory drool.

However, it feels like a horse kicked me in the side of my face.

I can't imagine what this would feel like without the pain killers.

Yup, complete and total dental sissy.

Sigh...




Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Hear No Truth...

The three wise monkeys over the Tōshō-gū shrine in Nikkō, Japan. (Source)
We've all heard the saying, "Hear no evil, speak no evil, see no evil."* It seems to me that as of late the "mainstream" media's motto seems to be "Hear no truth, speak no truth, see no truth." I have taken everything said, proclaimed, and/or written by the media since the Tet Offensive of 1968 with a grain of salt. It's hard to lend any credence to what they have to tell us when they increasingly slant the "news" to sell us on a certain agenda.

Now I'm not casting stones at one side or the other, I mean if we're truly honest with ourselves, all sides (wavelengths?) of the political spectrum do it. I mean in reality they're all in the business of selling something. And guess what? We, that is you and me, Joe or Jill Average American, are not the customers.

As I had it explained to me by a colleague who used to work for a sailing magazine (big business here in Little Rhody if you must know) the folks who bought the magazine and (presumably) read it were not the customers of the magazine. At least that's how the magazine folks viewed it. They were not making money by selling magazines for a few bucks a copy. Dear me no, they'd go out of business before the first issue hit the streets if their only source of revenue was the price of the magazine.

The customer (remember, from the magazine staff's point of view) were the advertisers. Those folks paid big bucks to have their glossy ads littered throughout the magazine, forcing us to go all the way back to page 87 to finish a story. Or wade through 50 pages of advertisements in a desperate attempt to find the table of contents, or a photo, or an article which wasn't actually an ad!

'Tis the same for the media these days, print, video, what-have-you. The customers are the advertisers, not thee and me. No Sir, No Ma'am. We don't have the kind of big money necessary to sustain these massive broadcast companies. Advertisers do.

Once upon a time the news departments of the networks were not considered to be part of the money making apparatus of the networks. Now they are, they need to bring in revenue just as much as prime time programming must make money.

We also live in the world of the 24-hour news cycle. So that 24 hours must be filled with stuff people want to watch. These days it isn't enough to be told that an airliner crashed in the ocean and all on board are feared lost. Nope.

Now we are treated to 'round the clock coverage of the event. The talking heads must discuss, dissect, and carefully reveal what little they know. If we sit there and watch it, they'll keep the story going regardless of the lack of new facts coming in.

Remember Malaysia Airlines flight MH370? That pretty much filled every moment of CNN's programming for days on end. Why? Well, people kept watching it. Do you think for a moment CNN would have kept at it if people stopped watching? Nope, they would have moved on to other stories and only updated the airline story as new facts came in. Like things used to be.

What sparked this rant? I'm detecting a concerted attempt on the part of the media to completely discredit the presumptive Republican candidate for President. I mean the Washington Post has over 20 reporters investigating the man. While ignoring his presumptive opponent in the November election. Polls are produced indicating that the man is falling behind the woman, with little of substance to indicate why.

Now I'm no Trump guy, not really. But this whole business smacks of fraud to me. Something is rotten and it ain't in Denmark, it's right here in these United States.

I've seen this before. If the media desires a certain outcome, then they will do everything in their power to make that happen. They aren't really accountable to anyone but their customer, who ain't us. As always, follow the money and ask cui bono, who benefits? It's not the American people.

In the days, weeks, and months ahead...

Don't believe everything you read or hear.

It's not lies, exactly.

But it's probably not the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth...





* A very interesting story behind the origin of the phrase "Hear no evil" etc., can be found here. Well, I thought it was interesting, as always YMMV.