12/12/18

Holiday Duty

Somewhere in the world, there are young Americans standing a watch, flying a patrol, getting ready to take out a combat patrol, defending a position, making us and the world safe.

They were not with their families on Thanksgiving and they will not be with them on Christmas.

But, they will be with all of us whether we acknowledge them or not.

They issue forth from places like Virginia Military Institute and they are the “rough” men (and women) that George Orwell spoke of thusly:

“People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.”

To those Americans who perform that duty, I say, “Thank you from all of us. Merry Christmas. Be safe and know that a grateful nation appreciates your service.”

To those veterans who served before them, we salute your service.

From those of us who were privileged to have been educated at Virginia Military Institute, know that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John will be there with you.

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Matthew, Mark, Luke, John — combat veterans of the Civil War and the Mexican War — standing ready to fight tonight under any conditions. Aimed down the parade ground of Virginia Military Institute. Merry Christmas, guns!

Ready to fight tonight.

Merry Christmas.

But, hey, what the Hell do I really know anyway? I’m just a Big Red Car.

12/11/18

Terrorists on Terror

Big Red Car here on a glorious, cold ATX day, y’all.

In Tehran, three days ago, there was a conference about fighting terrorism — yes, you read that correct.  In the capital of the nation which is the largest state sponsor of terrorism there was a conference on fighting terrorism.

Amongst the participants — six nation invitees — were Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Turkey, China, and Russia.

One could fairly single out Iran and Turkey as being cesspools of terror support. Pakistan is up there.

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12/10/18

I Did the Best I Could

Big Red Car here on a cold, sunny day in the ATX. Brrrr, 58F.

So, I’m in conversation with a trio of CEOs who have in common that they tried to fix something and didn’t quite get it fixed correctly the first time.

They came back with a longer rope and a bigger hammer and fixed it.

They were distraught that they hadn’t gotten it right on the first try.

To which your Big Red Car asked, “Did you do the best you could?”

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12/9/18

Who Are We?

So, the Big Red Car is trying to get into the Christmas spirit and is reading an article in some touchy-feely periodical which ruins the spirit of Christmas.

Or does it?

The article says there are all wired in a certain way. In this article that way is dark and forboding.

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12/7/18

Pearl Harbor Day

Every Pearl Harbor Day, I remember a conversation I had with a soldier who had been at Pearl on the day of the attack. It reverberates in my head. I can’t get it out.

This man had been at Sunday morning chow and was returning to his barracks when a Jap Zero made a low pass over the parade ground. He was located at one of the Army airfields and knew that there wasn’t supposed to be a Meatball flying over his parade ground.

He was there when the Japs returned and bombed the airfield into oblivion.The Japs would destroy all the American fighters that were lined up wing tip to wing tip to prevent sabotage.

I asked him, “What did you think the second you saw that Jap Zero?”

His answer was insightful. At first, I didn’t believe it. I would ask others if they felt the same way.

My Dad was in the Army that same day and he told me the same thing.

This is a picture of my Dad three weeks before Pearl Harbor on maneuvers in Louisiana when the Army was beginning to grow and shake out its fighting capabilities.

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12/5/18

A Single Act of Kindness

Big Red Car here on a day when the sun is struggling with the gloom. Gloom is ahead on points, but the sun is trying to rally.

A befitting, somber mood for the state funeral of President George Herbert Walker Bush.

If you see no other part of that funeral, watch President George W Bush eulogize his father. Bring a handkerchief and be with people in front of whom you are unafraid to cry. But, know that this is the America we all aspire to live in.

In his passing, President George Bush provided a singular act of kindness — he ensured that our current President, Donald J Trump, and our First Lady would be welcome at his funeral and that we would not see a replay of the tawdry Trump bashing which was the John McCain state funeral.

George HW Bush did no “reconcile” with President Trump. He moved on. He called President Trump a “blowhard” in his recent book. But, he moved on from that.

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12/4/18

The French Yellow Vests — Gilets Jaunes

Big Red Car here on a lovely, sunny ATX day. On Earth as it is in Texas, y’all!

So, the French are in the midst of some political riots.

Because France is a fashion forward country, the identifying rallying call is the chic “yellow vest” — gilets jaunes. Very chic fashion statement.

Here is a picture of the riotously fashionable yellow vest crowd in front of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris.

The Arc de Triomphe is the 162 foot high arch in the Place Charles de Gaulle from which a dozen avenues radiate.

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12/2/18

Geo HW Bush & Ross Perot 1992 Election

Big Red Car here like a lot of people feeling the loss of former President George HW Bush and reflecting on the accomplishments of this good and great man.

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“Fair winds and following seas, Mr. President. We have the watch.”

I use the word “good” before the word “great” because he was as revered for his goodness as he was for his greatness.

This was a man whose most significant professional limitation came in the form of a short guy with a crewcut named Ross Perot.

In the 1992 Presidential election, George Bush was just off the victory in the First Gulf War tempered by his failure to adhere to his own “read my lips, no new taxes” promise.

No Democrat wanted to take on such a popular President, so the Dems picked a nobody Arkansas Governor named William Jefferson Clinton.

The election was made more interesting by the injection of an independent candidate — Ross Perot.

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