Friday, February 8, 2013

How Government Handouts Create Life-Sapping Dependency!

Townhall.com ^ | Feberuary 8, 2013 | Daniel J. Mitchell

Remember Julia, the mythical moocher created by the Obama campaign to show the joys of government dependency? As illustrated by this Ramirez cartoon, Julia symbolizes the entitlement mentality.
Unfortunately, there are many real-life Julias.
I wrote a couple of years ago about Olga, a Greek woman who petulantly believed that government was responsible for her empty life.
But we don’t know any details about Olga other than her desire to mooch, so the best real-world examples of Julia may be from England. We have Natalija, a Lithuanian immigrant who has quickly learned bad habits of dependency, and Danny and Gina, two native-born scroungers.
Natalija, Danny, and Gina all decided to get a free ride from taxpayers, largely because overly generous handouts meant that they could enjoy higher living standards by staying at home and watching TV rather than living productive lives.
And if these info-graphics are any indication, there must be lots of people in the United Kingdom who make similar calculations.
No wonder English employers sometime have a hard time filling slots. Why climb the economic ladder when government is providing a comfy hammock?
Unfortunately, the same misguided policies exist in the United States. I shared a remarkable chart last year showing that a household would be better off with $29,000 of income rather than $69,000 of income because of the combined impact of both taxes and redistribution programs.
Now, courtesy of some first-rate journalism by a local television station, we have a powerful example exposing how the system operates. We learn the story of Kristina, who chooses to earn less money in order to keep the taxpayer-funded gravy train rolling.
We’ve all heard the line that America is becoming an entitlement society or welfare state, with half of U.S. households now receiving some type of government benefit. But a CBS 21 News investigation has taken that stat one step further to show you how much people are actually getting for free. A few years ago, reporter Chris Papst worked with a single mom who had two children. She turned down a raise because she said the extra money would decrease her government benefits. It was hard to understand why she did that, until Chris started working on this story. “You do what you have to do as a single mom,” explained Kristina Cogan. “And that’s what I did.” ……she admits living a life off the government can be comfortable. “If you’re going to get something for free, are you going to work for it?” Cogan explained. “It kind of like sucks you in.”
Here are some of the horrific details.
For this story, CBS 21 researched what government programs are available to a single mother of two making $19,000 a year. What we found was incredible. Our family would be eligible for $14,976 in free day care, another $13,400 for Head Start and Early Head Start, $7,148 in housing vouchers, $6,500 for weatherization projects, $400 to pay heating bills, $480 a year for a cell phone, with an extra $230 for a land line, and $182 in free legal advice. The family would get more than $6,028 in food assistance and another $6,045 in medical assistance. The mother is eligible for $5,500 in Pell Grants for school with an additional $12,000 for the Education Opportunity Grant; SMART Grant; and TEACH Grant. Our family would also get $6,800 in tax credits, and $1,900 in withholding would be returned. Add it up and this family can get $81,589 in free assistance.
There’s nothing in the story to suggest that Ms. Cogan is utilizing all these programs, but the plethora of available goodies certainly helps to explain why so many people decide it’s easier to be moochers rather than producers.
Which also explains why the welfare state is a recipe for ever-increasing dependency, as shown by this famous set of cartoons.
Which also causes a sluggish economy, as illustrated by this Chuck Asay cartoon.
No wonder the share of households taking something from the government has been increasing. And no wonder the poverty rate stopped falling once the government’s so-called War on Poverty began.
P.S. Most stories about welfare are pathetic, as we see from this dependency contest featuring the “Connecticut Kid” vs the “English Loafer.” But the welfare state also breeds more bizarre behaviors.
P.P.S. Are you subsidizing bad behavior? Click here to see a map revealing which states offer the most extravagant welfare benefits.
P.P.P.S. Share this video to help others understand the high cost of the welfare state.

Mental Health Organizations: Political Slaves of the Homosexual Movement

rethinkingtheology ^ | January 19, 2013 | James R. Aist

”It was never a medical decision — and that’s why I think the action came so fast… It was a political move.” “That’s how far we’ve come in ten years. Now we even have the American Psychiatric Association running scared.” — Barbara Gittings, Pro-homosexual Activist
Introduction
Homosexuality advocates like to appeal to position statements published by American mental health organizations to fortify their bogus claims concerning homosexuality issues. One would expect such professional groups to be a reliable source of unbiased information on such matters and that their official positions would be based on the most up-to-date and scientifically sound and objective research available. Unfortunately, where matters of homosexuality are concerned, this is not the case. Let’s take a look at how our mental health organizations have become political slaves of the homosexual movement.
The Take-over of the American Psychiatric Association (APA)
Beginning in the 1960s and continuing through the 1980s, radical homosexual activists, both within the organization and from without, conducted an organized campaign to transform the APA from a relatively open-minded, objective professional organization to a demonstrably biased, political mouthpiece for the homosexual movement (3, 7, 10). The most comprehensive and heavily documented record of these events – including numerous first-hand, published accounts – is a book (11) written by Ronald Bayer, a psychiatrist who is sympathetic with everything the homosexual activists did and applauded the ultimate outcome of their activities (3); these are published, historical facts. I will mention here a few of the most important developments in this campaign.
(Excerpt) Read more at rethinkingtheology.com ...

Obama to drastically cut immigration and border security budgets

Canada Free Press ^ | February 8, 2013 | Jim Kouri

Besides President Barack Obama’s executive actions regarding illegal aliens and U.S. immigration policy, without much notice by the GOP and news organizations, drastic reductions are expected within the Department of Homeland Security’s immigration enforcement-related bureaus, said a top protective intelligence and assessment specialist on Monday.
“Required budget reductions for the DHS will seriously undo much of the progress made over the past few years to secure our borders” said Dr. Lyle J. Rapacki, a consultant at Behavioral Analysis and Threat Assessment.
Dr. Rapacki claims there also will be a noticeable negative impact on aviation and maritime safety and security as well as an increase in potential infrastructure vulnerability. The budget reductions will also hamper disaster response time, and totally eliminate cyber security infrastructure advances made in the last couple of years, he added.
Over 24,500 jobs associated with Homeland Security, Border Patrol, Customs and Immigration will be lost, said Dr. Rapacki.
More than 3,000 Border Patrol agent positions will be lost, a reduction to below FY 2009 levels which will leave about 17,900 agents, claims Rapacki.
In addition, up to 3,400 Customs and Border Patrol personnel will be cut. Besides a negative impact on national security, this reduction will significantly increase wait times at our nation’s ports of entry.
The important Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) will lose more than 930 special agents in the next DHS budget. “A reduction of this size will significantly impact efforts to investigate crimes involving terrorism, transnational threats, especially from cartels, and international child pornography,” Dr. Rapacki warns.
(Excerpt) Read more at canadafreepress.com ...

Dr. Benjamin Carson refutes Barack Obama's agenda at Prayer Breakfast



Dr. Carson PhotoWASHINGTON – At Thursday morning's National Prayer Breakfast, Dr. Benjamin Carson, a celebrated pediatric neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins Hospital, gave a 25-minute long keynote address that directly refuted the key tenets of President Barack Obama’s liberal agenda – with Obama sitting just feet away.
Dr. Carson attacked political correctness as “horrible” and dangerous. Dr. Carson credited personal responsibility, not government assistance, for taking from a childhood of poverty to a lifetime of success.
Dr. Carson attacked fiscal irresponsibility, instead urging restrained spending. “One of our big problems right now...our deficit is a big problem. Think about it — and our national debt — $16 and a half trillion dollars,” said Dr. Carson as Obama watched. Obama increased the federal debt by $5.8 trillion in his first term, the worst ever increase in a presidential term.
Dr. Carson went on to press for a flat tax, rejecting Obama’s call for higher taxes on higher earners. ”When I pick up my Bible, you know what I see — I see the fairest individual in the universe — God — and he’s given us a system. It’s called tithe,” said Dr. Carson. Carson went on to extol their fairness of the flat tax, under which everyone pays the same rate.
Dr. Carson also diametrically opposed ObamaCare, attacking the idea of government bureaucracy funding health care and instead recommending private health savings accounts.
Congressman Steve Stockman (R-Texas 36) today called on President Barack Obama to order a transcript of today’s National Prayer Breakfast keynote address, frame it and hang it in the Oval Office.
The National Prayer Breakfast, an annual D.C. event that gave us President Ronald Reagan’s “Evil Empire” speech, made history again this year with a highly accomplished black doctor directly refuting liberalism and ObamaCare in front of the President.
“President Obama urged us to take to heart what we heard today. I hope he will take his own advice for once,” said Stockman. “Because what he heard was an accomplished, productive surgeon telling him he is destroying health care, destroying our economy and destroying personal responsibility.”
“Instead of bringing people together, Obama has spent four years trying to cut Americans up into warring factions,” said Stockman.

Confirmed: The Payroll-tax holiday was a big nothingburger (Gimmicky stimulus effort did nothing)

Hotair ^ | 02/08/2013 | Ed Morrissey

This should be a lesson to politicians and economists about the nature of gimmicky “stimulus” efforts …. but probably won’t be. In the pressure cooker of the tax fight over the holidays, most people forgot about the payroll-tax holiday — the reduction by two percentage points of FICA withholding for Social Security. Its backers claimed that putting $20 a week in the hands of earners would boost spending and the economy, which turned out to be entirely false. They then claimed that the expiration of this temporary stimulus would tank the economy through reduced spending.
And that also turns out to be false. The Washington Post is (mildly) shocked, shocked to find people spending money anyway:
Some of the nation’s largest retailers posted solid gains in January even though shoppers were hitting the malls with smaller paychecks.
The results reported Thursday offer the first glimpse into how the expiration of the payroll tax cut is affecting household budgets. A worker making $50,000 a year faces a decrease of $1,000 in take-home pay over the course of the year, and economists predicted spending would fall off. But many companies found that shoppers were more resilient than expected.
According to the International Council of Shopping Centers, retail sales rose 4.5 percent in January compared with a year ago. The data cover sales at stores open at least a year for 22 national chain stores.
“Simply put, January was an outstanding month,” Macy’s chief executive Terry J. Lundgren said.
The Post also cautions that this is more or less anecdotal still. Official retail numbers don’t come out until next week, and stores like Wal-Mart don’t post monthly results. Still, with higher-end retailers like Macy’s and Nordstrom’s posting double-digit increases, and mid-market retailer Kohl’s following suit, it seems unlikely that a discounter like Wal-Mart would be hard hit in the same period.
Surprised? Don’t be. The payroll tax holiday didn’t do anything positive for retail sales when it was implemented, as I explained last year when I first pointed out that its expiration was approaching:
Both sides sold the payroll tax holiday as an economy-stimulating policy. As such, though, it simply followed the failures of Barack Obama’s Making Work Pay weekly tax rebate and George Bush’s lump-sum tax rebate. The numbers involved, about $20 per week, hardly constitute an incentive for spending freely. In the first year of this particular holiday season, personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased by 3.1 percent (annualized) in the first quarter, but then only rose 1.0 percent, 1.7 percent, and 2.0 percent in subsequent 2011 quarters. In the year prior to this policy’s enactment, PCE grew at more than 2.5 percent each quarter, hitting 4.1 percent in the final quarter before Congress passed this particular stimulus. It’s possible to argue that these 2011 numbers might have been worse without the tax holiday, but it’s impossible to argue that it led to resurgent economic growth.
Furthermore, this “holiday” comes with a price. The money comes out of the Social Security Fund’s revenue stream, which already doesn’t produce enough income to cover outgoing expenditures. This stimulus measure is aptly named, as it provides a “holiday” from fiscal sense in a program that is already on the road to insolvency, if not as quickly as Medicare. At least in principle, this tax cut doesn’t keep funds from the government — it takes it from the retirement funds of the taxpayers themselves, just as if the money had come out of a 401(k) account.
The decision to spend doesn’t come from government stimuli. The payroll-tax holiday joins its predecessors like Making Work Pay and the 2008 Bush stimulus checks that purport to push economic growth by temporarily allowing people to keep a little more of their own money. It’s yet another Cash-for-Clunkers gimmick that doesn’t drive anything but instability and ambiguity.
If we want real economic growth, then we need tax reform that eliminates those two qualities and allows Americans to spend and invest with confidence. That’s the lesson from the payroll-tax-holiday nothingburger, but don’t expect politicians to learn it unless we teach it to them — and then test them on it at the ballot box.
Update: The New York Times spins a very different tale, pointing out how the payroll-tax holiday expiration hit poor families — and supposedly retail sales, too (via JWF and Instapundit):
Jack Andrews and his wife no longer enjoy what they call date night, their once-a-month outing to the movies and a steak dinner at Logan’s Roadhouse in Augusta, Ga. In Harlem, Eddie Phillips’s life insurance payment will have to wait a few more weeks. And Jessica Price is buying cheaper food near her home in Orlando, Fla., even though she worries it may not be as healthy.
Like millions of other Americans, they are feeling the bite from the sharp increase in payroll taxes that took effect at the beginning of January. There are growing signs that the broader economy is suffering, too.
Chain-store sales have weakened over the course of the month. And two surveys released last week suggested that consumer confidence was eroding, especially among lower-income Americans.
While these data points are preliminary — more detailed statistics on retail sales and other trends will not be available until later this month — at street level, the pain from the expiration of a two-percentage-point break in Social Security taxes in 2011 and 2012 is plain to see.
So other than a vague reference to a consumer confidence number, what other data does the NYT have to show retail sales falling?
Complete monthly data for retail sales in January will not be released until later this week, but the weekly data already available for last month showed a steady deterioration in shopping activity.
What weekly data? That’s never explained. The NYT offers a half-dozen anecdotes from people who say they are buying less, while the Washington Post uses actual sales figures from retailers that tell an entirely different story. One of these two have gotten the story entirely wrong, and I’m pretty sure it’s the one without any real data.

GOP aims to ease bloodshed in 2016 primary debates

Pottstown Mercury ^ | 2/7/13 | Byron York

“While we were playing footsie debating each other 22 times, they were spending $100 million on technology,” Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said recently, referring to his party’s rigorous debate schedule in the 2012 GOP presidential primary season. The last campaign, many Republican insiders said during a recent RNC meeting, had too many debates, the result of which was a GOP arguing with itself while Democrats prepared the way for Barack Obama’s victory.
There’s no doubt the Republican debates produced many damaging moments for the party. There was Mitt Romney’s $10,000 bet offer, which helped cement his image as an out-of-touch rich guy. There were any number of gaffes from Rick Perry, culminating in Perry’s painful-to-watch “Oops” moment. There was Michele Bachmann’s HPV vaccine blunder. There were bare-knuckle fights over immigration. And there was warfare between Romney and Newt Gingrich, in which Gingrich prevailed in South Carolina only to be flattened by Romney in Florida. By the end, there was a lot of blood on the floor.
(Excerpt) Read more at pottsmerc.com ...

The Voter Fraud That ‘Never Happens’ Keeps Coming Back!

National Review ^ | 2/8/2013 | John Fund

Critics of voter ID and other laws cracking down on voter fraud claim they’re unnecessary because fraud is nonexistent. For instance, Brennan Center attorneys Michael Waldman and Justin Levitt claimed last year: “A person casting two votes risks jail time and a fine for minimal gain. Proven voter fraud, statistically, happens about as often as death by lightning strike.”

Well, lightning is suddenly all over Cincinnati, Ohio. The Hamilton County Board of Elections is investigating 19 possible cases of alleged voter fraud that occurred when Ohio was a focal point of the 2012 presidential election. A total of 19 voters and nine witnesses are part of the probe.

Democrat Melowese Richardson has been an official poll worker for the last quarter century and registered thousands of people to vote last year. She candidly admitted to Cincinnati’s Channel 9 this week that she voted twice in the last election.

This is how Channel 9′s website summarized the case:

According to county documents, Richardson’s absentee ballot was accepted on Nov. 1, 2012 along with her signature. On Nov. 11, she told an official she also voted at a precinct because she was afraid her absentee ballot would not be counted in time.
(Excerpt) Read more at nationalreview.com ...

Just Ban Guns From Liberals!

So. Cal. Rogue Ex-Cop and Murderer is Pro-Obama, Pro-Gun Control, Piers Morgan Fan!

02/07/12


From the murdering liberal freak's "manifesto."

Anti-NRA:
Wayne LaPierre, President of the NRA, you’re a vile and inhumane piece of [snip]. You never even showed 30 seconds of empathy for the children, teachers, and families of Sandy Hook.
[How many people has Wayne LaPierre murdered in cold blood you gutter-dwelling, sub-human vermin?!]
Loves Piers Morgan:
…give Piers Morgan an indefinite resident alien and Visa card. Mr. Morgan, the problem that many American gun owners have with you and your continuous discussion of gun control is that you are not an American citizen and have an accent that is distinct and clarifies that you are a foreigner. I want you to know that I agree with you 100% on enacting stricter firearm laws.
The killer is also a huge Obama supporter and fan of gun-control.
Loves Obama:
You disrespect the office of the POTUS/Presidency and Commander in Chief. You call him Kenyan, mongroid, halfrican, muslim, and FBHO when in essence you are to address him as simply, President. The same as you did to President George W. Bush and all those in the highest ranking position of our land before him. Just as I always have. You question his birth certificate, his educational and professional accomplishments, and his judeo-christian beliefs. You make disparaging remarks about his dead parents. You never questioned the fact that his former opponent, the honorable Senator John McCain, was not born in the CONUS or that Bush had a C average in his undergrad. Electoral Candidates children (Romney) state they want to punch the president in the face during debates with no formal repercussions. No one even questioned the fact that the son just made a criminal threat toward the President. You call his wife a Wookie. Off the record, I love your new bangs, Mrs. Obama.
Pro Gun Control:
Who in there right mind needs a [snip] silencer!!! who needs a freaking SBR AR15? No one. No more Virginia Tech, Columbine HS, Wisconsin temple, Aurora theatre, Portland malls, Tucson rally, Newtown Sandy Hook. Whether by executive order or thru a bi-partisan congress an assault weapons ban needs to be re-instituted. Period!!!
Mia Farrow said it best. “Gun control is no longer debatable, it’s not a conversation, its a moral mandate.”
[Can anyone imagine if this cockroach indicated he is a Limbaugh fan, pro-NRA, and a George W. Bush and Mitt Romney supporter that the media would be completely ignoring that part of the creep's "manifesto?" Hell, a mass shooting can't happen without the shameless, lapdog, left wing media checking the perp's party registration to hopefully discover that he's a Republican, then gleefully checking to see whether the killer has any involvement with the Tea Party.]

DERELICTION OF DUTY: OBAMA DID NOTHING TO SAVE AMERICAN LIVES IN BENGHAZI--AND LIED ABOUT IT!

Big Peace ^

Nothing. That is what President Barack Obama did on the night of September 11, 2012, as terrorists attacked the U.S. consulate in Benghazi and killed four Americans, among them Ambassador Christopher Stevens. President Obama’s inaction was revealed in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Thursday by outgoing Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey.
Under direct questioning by Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Panetta admitted that he had no communication with President Obama after their “pre-scheduled” meeting at 5:00 p.m. EDT. The attack on the consulate had already been under way for 90 minutes at that time. Neither the president nor anyone else from the White House called afterwards to check what was happening; the Commander-in-Chief had left it “up to us,” said Panetta.
Panetta’s testimony directly contradicts President Obama’s own claim to have issued “three direectives” as soon as he learned “what was going on” in Benghazi. As he told a Denver reporter in October: I gave three very clear directives. Number one, make sure we are securing our personnel and that we are doing whatever we need to. Number two, we are going to investigate exactly what happened and make sure it doesn't happen again. Number three, find out who did this so we can bring them to justice.
That same claim was subsequently repeated by other Democrats, including Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel, who came to the president’s defense. But if those directives were indeed given--and proof has never been produced--they were given long after the attack, not while the attack was going on, during which time the president did nothing.
(Excerpt) Read more at breitbart.com ...

NOW The Truth Comes: Criminally Irresponsible Obama Basically Hid in Closet During Benghazi Attack!

Reaganite Republican ^ | 08 February 2013 | Reaganite Republican


Can you say 'Dereliction of Duty'?


So Senator Ted Cruz (TP-R, Texas) is the man who FINALLY got to the bottom of what the White House/MSM have worked so hard -for months- to obfuscate: yesterday the GOP rising
soaring star forced Leon Panetta to admit in sworn testimony that SoS Hillary Clinton was simply not available on the day the Benghazi consulate was attacked... nowhere to be found.

Yes, the US Secretary of Defense had ZERO contact with US Secretary of State Clinton until long after four American heroes were dead. Where the hell was she all day, partying with Huma?

But far, far worse is fact that Barack Obama -who twice now has taken an oath to protect us all- held but ONE brief conversation with Leon Panetta -were the President was made fully aware that our consulate was under seige- at a (previously scheduled) meeting on 9.11.2012... that was it all day:

________________________________________________________________________________

...Obama failed to communicate in any way with him that day.

Panetta said he simply didn’t hear from anyone at the White House.

He also said logistics and fear of more attacks prevented a quicker, more aggressive U.S. response to the terrorist attack on Sept. 11, 2012.

But for days, even weeks, the Obama administration attributed the violence and deaths to a mob that was upset over a little-known online video purporting to be about Mohammad, a move that still has not been explained.
________________________________________________________________________________
Most assumed the Administration's bumbling (mis)management occurred in some crisis center, or at the White House war room... in reality, nothing like that ever happened: nobody held any meetings anywhere, Panetta seems to have been left all by his lonesome to cobble-together a response he felt would not offend Dear Leader's bizarre concerns and loyalties.

Obama not only gave no orders, but didn't even see fit to check-in with the Secretary of Defense (nor State) at any point in time on evening of the attack- the US Commander-in-Chief appears to have been completely and utterly detached.

Remember in November, when Obama said he 'gave orders' on that tragic day to 'keep our people safe'? Under oath -as opposed to Obama's unquestioned BS parroted in the press- Panetta also revealed in Senate testimony that operational details of the response, the decisions on what resources were available to help, and all other decisions were left 'up to us'... doesn't sound like Obama was giving anybody any orders -except maybe the White House chef- does it?


Panetta also made clear he has always thought it was a terrorist attack -that our response was restrained by fear of similar, follow-up ambushes of US responders- and seemed to have no idea where the harebrained 'anti-Islam video' theory trotted-out by the White House ever came from.

This squirelly, lying traitor Obama needs to be impeached-
no time like the present, you know.

Didja ever think God might hand righteous Americans an opportunity to free ourselves from the repulsive Obama regime's yoke? I have: perhaps the Benghazi Four's unfortunate sacrifice will come to be something more than just symbolic, if we can prosecute this sinister, incompetent putz for SO flippantly neglecting his sworn constitutional duty- thus liberating the country.

And the response to this blockbuster testimony from the MFM (Obama-fellating media) ?


The Dream

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Which end up?

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The worst sin!

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Duck and cover!

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Turn in your weapons!

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Big Trouble

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Guards

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More Sensitive!

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Stupid question, excellent answer!

For those that don't know him, Major General Peter Cosgrove is an Australian.

General Cosgrove was interviewed on the radio recently.
Read his reply to the lady who interviewed him concerning guns and children.

Regardless of how you feel about gun laws you have to love this!
This is one of the best comeback lines of all time.

This is a portion of an ABC radio interview between a female broadcaster and General Cosgrove who was about to sponsor a Boy Scout Troop visiting his military Headquarters.

FEMALE INTERVIEWER:So, General Cosgrove, what things are you going to teach these young boys when they visit your base?
GENERAL COSGROVE:

We're going to teach them climbing, canoeing, archery and shooting.

FEMALE INTERVIEWER:
Shooting! That's a bit irresponsible, isn't it?
GENERAL COSGROVE:
I don't see why, they'll be properly supervised on the rifle range.
FEMALE INTERVIEWER:
Don't you admit that this is a terribly dangerous activity to be teaching children?
GENERAL COSGROVE:
I don't see how. We will be teaching them proper rifle discipline before they even touch a firearm.

FEMALE INTERVIEWER:
But you're equipping them to become violent killers.
GENERAL COSGROVE:
Well, Ma'am, you're equipped to be a prostitute, but you're not one, are you?

The broadcast went silent for 46 seconds and when it returned, the interview was over.