The Theft Of History

Closing Thought–03May18

As a history wonk and have been to many historical sites I was sadden by war and the theft of historic artifacts…..they say that ISIS is using the stolen artifacts to fund their operations ……

I think anyone that buys stolen artifacts needs to be shot for stealing a people’s history…..and one of the biggest thieves was American company Hobby Lobby….

When their Museum of the Bible was busted for having massive amount of stolen artifacts I post this post….

Now they have returned many of the artifacts in the Museum…….

Hobby Lobby’s “passion for the Bible” may have made it a bit overzealous when it came to purchasing antiquities from other lands. The arts and crafts retailer obtained thousands of illegally smuggled artifacts from Iraq in 2010—then subsequently agreed to send them back—and now that day has come. US Immigration and Customs Enforcement has announced that 3,800 of the 5,500 ancient items purchased from dealers in the UAE and Israel will be sent back to Iraq on Wednesday, per NPR. The cuneiform tablets (some from the ancient Sumerian city of Irisagrig), cylinder seals, and other items are “mostly legal and administrative documents, but also include an important collection of Early Dynastic incantations and a bilingual religious text from the Neo-Babylonian period,” an ICE statement notes.

“These pieces are very important to us and they should be returned home … to Iraq, to the rightful owner of these pieces,” an Iraqi Embassy official tells NPR. The DOJ had filed a civil action complaint in July 2017 after Hobby Lobby purchased the artifacts for $1.6 million, with the intention of displaying them in the Museum of the Bible it opened last fall in Washington, DC. That purchase was made despite the company being warned by an archaeological ace that the artifacts could be stolen and that Hobby Lobby should make sure to definitively identify them. Some of the artifacts that came into the company’s possession were mislabeled on either their contents or place of origin. It’s not clear if Hobby Lobby, which said it made “regrettable mistakes” during the purchase, knew the artifacts were obtained illegally, or the status of the other 1,700 artifacts it purchased in the 2010 deal.

Will these bastards go unpunished?  They did not know they were stolen?  They spent $1.6 million and did not vet the people they were doing business with…..they knew!  Now the question is what will be their sentence for buying stolen goods?

If it were me I would be under the jail and the key thrown away….but this is a corporation and “good Christians and they will get off scott free.

Talk about BS….this is it a big pile of it.

Reforms Are Needed (Pentagon)

$60 hammers or $300 toilet seats or that $45 wood screw….these are some of the spending irregularities that have been reported over the years… there is always stories of money that has been lost by the Pentagon…..

A new Department of Defense Inspector General’s report, released last week, has left Americans stunned at the jaw-dropping lack of accountability and oversight. The glaring report revealed the Pentagon couldn’t account for $6.5 trillion dollars worth of Army general fund transactions and data, according to a report by the Fiscal Times.

The Pentagon, which has been notoriously lax in its accounting practices, has never completed an audit, would reveal how the agency has specifically spent the trillions of dollars allocated for wars, equipment, personnel, housing, healthcare and procurements allotted to them by Congress.

The recent budget gave the Pentagon huge increases and some are saying that Congress needs to step up and make some reforms to the system to make the Pentagon more cash efficient……

In periods of budget increases, reforms and efficiencies tend to fall by the wayside. That should not be the case. The budget increases should be a chance to reflect and to re-assess efficiencies and reforms, especially those that require up-front investments to be executed. The Department of Defense needs to be a good steward of taxpayers’ dollars, regardless of future levels of the defense budget. Good stewardship includes being able to extract the maximum amount of value from every dollar spent, independent of the department’s budget. The Pentagon should take advantage of its increased budget to make sure that there is room to invest in creating efficiencies and reforming outdated systems.

1. The Pentagon should take advantage of its budget increase to enact business reforms that will lead to a more efficient and effective Defense Department.

2. From closing and realigning bases to providing school choice for military dependents, there are many opportunities for the Pentagon to improve its operations.

3. The Department of Defense will need congressional support to enact meaningful business reforms, and should seek Congress’s cooperation now.


Troop Morale

To successfully fight a war then the troops must have a high morale rating…..The US has been fighting a war since 2001…..after 17 years just how is the morale of our troops?

Since 2009, $287 million has been spent on programs aimed at improving morale within the US military, which has shouldered two major overseas combat deployments over the past decade.

But these efforts may have been largely fruitless, as 52% of soldiers across all branches remain “pessimistic about their future in the military,” according to an April USA Today report.

For decades, analysts have consistently reported on supposedly declining US military morale, even before the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

A Brookings Institution report notes: “Observers regularly fretted over low morale during the defense drawdown of the 1990s, during the start of the Iraq War, during the Iraq Surge, during the Afghanistan Surge; and at practically all the points in between … After each report of troop morale hitting ‘rock bottom,’ troop morale seems to slip lower yet and, still, the military soldiers on.”

Plus a new study shows that the morale of our troops is continuing to erode……

It is time for the country to take stock of all these wars…..wars that we are fighting for no other reason than to keep defense industries in business.

Some have suggested that low morale lead to drug use during the Vietnam War as a contributor to our failure.  Let’s not repeat the past.

War: Stop, Think, Save

It is becoming that time of the year when the politicians will be laser focused on the deficit and spending……most conservs will jump on the same programs they always jump on….Social Security and Medicare.

I will agree that this country needs to save some cash but I do not agree that social safety net is the place we need to focused on.

I think there is a place that we can save money and still hold our head high and provide for our citizens…..we could eliminate a couple of unnecessary wars for instance….

When President Donald Trump signed the massive omnibus spending bill last month, he did so fleetingly and reluctantly. He called it a “ridiculous” piece of legislation that made a mockery of Congress as an institution, and he sternly made a promise: “I never sign another bill like this again.”

The only reason Trump swallowed his disgust for the bill was because the U.S. military received a substantial windfall of cash courtesy of the American taxpayer. The 2018 omnibus threw $700 billion into the military’s coffers, a mountain of a figure that the bureaucrats and pencil pushers in the Pentagon never had to work with before.

I know this is a pipe dream for the M-IC will not allow any decrease in their portion of the American Pie……sadl6y we have enough wars on our plate and a reduction in the strain would be nothing but beneficial.