Combs Spouts Off

"It's my opinion and it's very true."

The left’s religious double standard

Posted by Richard on November 28, 2015

The echoes of gunfire at the Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood clinic had barely died down before practically every leftist in the country was screaming about “white Christian terrorism”  and blaming the Project Veritas undercover videos about PP’s fetal tissue sales. Also the entire Republican Party, even though the shooter is not a Republican (I’ll refrain from commenting on Robert Dear’s designation as female on his voter registration, since that may just be a clerical error).

Of course, these are the same people who, after every mass-casualty attack by jihadists shouting “Allahu akbar,” insist that it had nothing whatsoever to do with religion and condemn any mention of radical Islam as racist (as if the desire to impose 7th-century sharia law across the globe and kill or subjugate anyone who doesn’t submit to “the will of Allah” were a racial characteristic).

There was, in fact, at least one pro-life Christian at the scene of the shootings: Garrett Swasey, the police officer who was killed while defending those inside the Planned Parenthood clinic. Four other cops were wounded.

Meanwhile, Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson and Twinkies addict Michael Moore agree that the cops “made sure not 2 kill him” (shooter Robert Dear) because he’s white.

So there are people out there who seriously believe that the officers who watched Dear shoot five of their own spared his life out of sympathy for his whiteness.

I can’t begin to fathom how the leftist mind works. SMDH.

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A Thanksgiving song for you

Posted by Richard on November 26, 2015

Don Henley is probably the typical skull-full-of-mush Hollywood liberal, but he’s a pretty good songwriter and a damn fine lyricist. For proof, look no further than “My Thanksgiving” (from the 2000 album Inside Job), which is also the perfect song for today. Enjoy!

[YouTube link]

A lot of things have happened
Since the last time we spoke
Some of them are funny
Some of ’em ain’t no joke
And I trust you will forgive me
If I lay it on the line
I always thought you were a friend of mine

Sometimes I think about you
I wonder how you’re doing now
And what you’re going through

The last time I saw you
We were playing with fire
We were loaded with passion
And a burning desire
For every breath, for every day of living
And this is my Thanksgiving

Now the trouble with you and me, my friend
Is the trouble with this nation
Too many blessings, too little appreciation
And I know that kind of notion-well, it just ain’t cool
So send me back to Sunday school
Because I’m tired of waiting for reason to arrive
It’s too long we’ve been living
These unexamined lives
I’ve got great expectations
I’ve got family and friends
I’ve got satisfying work
I’ve got a back that bends
For every breath, for every day of living
This is my Thanksgiving

Have you noticed that an angry man
Can only get so far
Until he reconciles the way he thinks things ought to be
With the way things are

Here in this fragmented world, I still believe
In learning how to give love, and how to receive it
And I would not be among those who abuse this privilege
Sometimes you get the best light from a burning bridge

And I don’t mind saying that I still love it all
I wallowed in the springtime
Now I’m welcoming the fall
For every moment of joy
Every hour of fear
For every winding road that brought me here
For every breath, for every day of living
This is my Thanksgiving

For everyone who helped me start
And for everything that broke my heart
For every breath, for every day of living
This is my Thanksgiving


I hope that’s as meaningful to you as it is to me.

Now, do me—and yourself—a favor and go read The real Thanksgiving story.

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A salute to our veterans

Posted by Richard on November 10, 2015


To those who have served, and to those who serve today:

Thank you.

It Is The Soldier

It is the Soldier, not the minister
Who has given us freedom of religion.

It is the Soldier, not the reporter
Who has given us freedom of the press.

It is the Soldier, not the poet
Who has given us freedom of speech.

It is the Soldier, not the campus organizer
Who has given us freedom to protest.

It is the Soldier, not the lawyer
Who has given us the right to a fair trial.

It is the Soldier, not the politician
Who has given us the right to vote.

It is the Soldier who salutes the flag,
Who serves beneath the flag,
And whose coffin is draped by the flag,
Who allows the protester to burn the flag.

Charles Michael Province, U.S. Army

Copyright Charles M. Province, 1970, 2005

Thanks, Papa, for your many years of service. I love you and miss you.

On this Veterans Day, please make a contribution to an organization (or two or three!) that supports veterans or active-duty military personnel.

The Signaleer has a nice history of Remembrance Day, which begat Armistice Day, which begat Veterans Day, and he includes the classic World War I poem, In Flanders Fields. Well worth a visit.

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More compelling than “man bites dog”

Posted by Richard on November 9, 2015

You probably think Daniel Boone was a tough kid. After all, he killed him a b’ar when he was just three. Well, he’s nothing compared to this kid:

Toddler bites, kills poisonous snake he found in his backyard

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL –  A mother whose 17-month-old son was playing in their backyard found the boy covered in blood while holding a poisonous snake in his mouth.

Jaine Ferreira, the boy’s mother, … went out to see what he was doing and found him with the snake in his mouth and the animal still struggling to get loose. …

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Happy National Coffee Day!

Posted by Richard on September 29, 2015

September 29 is National Coffee Day. In celebration, a number of doughnut shops and other restaurants are offering free coffee today. Krispy Kreme is even throwing in a free doughnut. If you’re a cheapskate and have lots of time on your hands, you could drive from place to place filling up for free on the world’s healthiest beverage.

I should point out that for some of us, every day is Coffee Day. :-)

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Happy Talk Like A Pirate Day!

Posted by Richard on September 19, 2015

September 19 is International Talk Like A Pirate Day. What are you going to do to celebrate? If you click that link, you can sing along with “Drunken Sailor.” Granted, it’s more fun after several helpings of grog, and the sun is barely over the yardarm. But since it’s Saturday (which, as the site points out, makes this Talk Like A Pirate Weekend) …

Q: Who is the most popular cartoonist among pirates?
A: Gary Laarrrson (The Faarrr Side)

Q: What board game do pirates like to play?
A: Paarrrcheesi

Drink up, folks, I’ll be here all night. <tap><tap><tap> Is this thing on?

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Never forget

Posted by Richard on September 11, 2015

Fourteen years ago this morning, we watched in horror as people jumped a thousand feet to their deaths because it was better than the alternative. Later that day, we learned that the heroic passengers of United Flight 93, knowing the fate that awaited them, had fought and died to prevent their plane from crashing into the White House or Capitol. In the ensuing days, we learned the details of that brave struggle, and “Let’s roll!” became a phrase that brought goosebumps to me whenever I heard it.

We must not  forget the events of September 11, 2001. We must keep the images fresh in our memories. It’s necessary, I believe, if we’re to retain the resolve we need to understand, oppose, and defeat the ongoing Islamofascist effort to destroy our way of life, of which the attacks of 9/11 were a part.

We must not forget that there is a large, powerful, well-financed international movement dedicated to destroying Western Civilization.

On September 11, 2001, barbarians with box cutters — primitive 7th-century savages who could never build a World Trade Center or a 747, but whose insane ideology is dedicated to making the building of such things impossible — murdered 2,996 innocent people and changed Lower Manhattan from this:

Lady Liberty watching over the twin towers before 9/11

to this:

1st tower falls

Fleeing as the tower falls

Fleeing through the choking dust

Falling to his death

Some people have forgotten now
It was many years ago
And peaceful here at home since then
So just let the memory go
But I close my eyes and see it still
Like it was yesterday — Oh no!
People jumping from a hundred-story building!
I can still see those Americans
Jumping from a hundred-story building …

© 2009 Richard G. Combs. All rights reserved.

Never forget.

Flag still stands

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Jihad in Chattanooga

Posted by Richard on July 17, 2015

The gunman who attacked a recruiting station and a Naval and Marine Corps facility in Chattanooga, TN, killing four Marines before being killed himself, was identified as Muhammad Youssef Abdulazee. He was a naturalized American citizen, born in Kuwait, who came to the US as a child with his parents. The Washington Post described them as “a conservative Muslim family,” and his father was at one time investigated by the FBI for ties to a terrorist organization.

But never mind that. The President described Abdulazee as a “lone gunman” and the FBI is investigating it as “domestic terrorism.” That’s the phrase they use when there’s believed to be no connection to an international terrorist organization like al Qaeda or ISIS. It’s apparently the policy of the Obama administration to never utter the words “Islamic terrorism,” “jihad,” or anything like that.

Well, I will. Abdulazee’s “lone jihad” was a textbook example of exactly the kind of attack that ISIS has been urging its followers in the West to carry out. He may have acted alone, but he was acting under direction of, in support of, and in furtherance of the mission of ISIS and the Islamofascist movement to destroy Western Civilization and impose political Islam across the globe.

But the head-in-the-sand attitude of our leadership isn’t what made me really angry about this incident. What made me really angry was seeing this Fox News image of the recruiting center entrance:


Notice the “gun-free zone” sign on the door amidst all the bullet holes. “I don’t understand,” say what Rush calls the new castrati, “why didn’t the sign work?” The sign worked fine; what it really says is “everyone inside is unarmed and helpless.” Heck, Abdulazee shot up the recruiting center from his car outside, so he didn’t even violate the “gun-free zone” rule.

After that, Abdulazee drove seven miles to the Navy Operational Support Center and Marine Corps Reserve Center, where he killed four unarmed Marines. During that drive, he was being pursued by police, and they apparently are the ones who shot him. The Marines and sailors at the facility couldn’t have, because they too were unarmed.

Throughout the United States, all the military personnel who’ve been trained at great expense to expertly handle various weapons and fight valiantly in defense of themselves, their buddies, and their country, are disarmed and defenseless. Despite the fact that we’ve had several jihad attacks (not “workplace violence”) at military installations, and despite the fact that ISIS is explicitly urging its followers to perpetrate more such attacks.

Damn it, stop this gun control in the military nonsense! Arm our armed forces!

If you agree, tweet #ArmOurArmedForces.

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Happy Independence Day!

Posted by Richard on July 4, 2015

Today is not just about fireworks and cookouts. It’s the birthday of the first and only country founded on an idea: human liberty. Join me in celebrating that founding and that idea.

Old Glory

Perhaps the finest words ever penned by man, from the document that changed the world for the better like no other before or since:

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. – That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, – That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

Go read “The Americans Who Risked Everything,” a wonderful speech by Rush Limbaugh, Jr. (father of talkmeister Rush Limbaugh III) about the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Here’s an excerpt:

Ben Franklin was the only really old man. Eighteen were under 40; three were in their 20s. Of the 56 almost half – 24 – were judges and lawyers. Eleven were merchants, nine were landowners and farmers, and the remaining 12 were doctors, ministers, and politicians.

With only a few exceptions, such as Samuel Adams of Massachusetts, these were men of substantial property. All but two had families. The vast majority were men of education and standing in their communities. They had economic security as few men had in the 18th Century.

Each had more to lose from revolution than he had to gain by it. John Hancock, one of the richest men in America, already had a price of 500 pounds on his head. He signed in enormous letters so that his Majesty could now read his name without glasses and could now double the reward. Ben Franklin wryly noted: “Indeed we must all hang together, otherwise we shall most assuredly hang separately.”

Fat Benjamin Harrison of Virginia told tiny Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts: “With me it will all be over in a minute, but you, you will be dancing on air an hour after I am gone.”

These men knew what they risked. The penalty for treason was death by hanging. And remember, a great British fleet was already at anchor in New York Harbor.

They were sober men. There were no dreamy-eyed intellectuals or draft card burners here. They were far from hot-eyed fanatics yammering for an explosion. They simply asked for the status quo. It was change they resisted. It was equality with the mother country they desired. It was taxation with representation they sought. They were all conservatives, yet they rebelled.

It was principle, not property, that had brought these men to Philadelphia. Two of them became presidents of the United States. Seven of them became state governors. One died in office as vice president of the United States. Several would go on to be U.S. Senators. One, the richest man in America, in 1828 founded the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. One, a delegate from Philadelphia, was the only real poet, musician and philosopher of the signers. (It was he, Francis Hopkinson not Betsy Ross who designed the United States flag.)

Richard Henry Lee, a delegate from Virginia, had introduced the resolution to adopt the Declaration of Independence in June of 1776. He was prophetic in his concluding remarks: “Why then sir, why do we longer delay? Why still deliberate? Let this happy day give birth to an American Republic. Let her arise not to devastate and to conquer but to reestablish the reign of peace and law.

“The eyes of Europe are fixed upon us. She demands of us a living example of freedom that may exhibit a contrast in the felicity of the citizen to the ever-increasing tyranny which desolates her polluted shores. She invites us to prepare an asylum where the unhappy may find solace, and the persecuted repost.

“If we are not this day wanting in our duty, the names of the American Legislatures of 1776 will be placed by posterity at the side of all of those whose memory has been and ever will be dear to virtuous men and good citizens.”

Though the resolution was formally adopted July 4, it was not until July 8 that two of the states authorized their delegates to sign, and it was not until August 2 that the signers met at Philadelphia to actually put their names to the Declaration.

If you don’t have a copy of the Declaration handy, you can find the entire text here. Take the time this Independence Day to read it. Then raise a glass in a toast to Liberty!

John Trumbull's "Declaration of Independence"

John Trumbull’s “Declaration of Independence”

The painting features the committee that drafted the Declaration of Independence — John Adams, Roger Sherman, Thomas Jefferson (presenting the document), and Benjamin Franklin — standing before John Hancock, the President of the Continental Congress. The painting includes portraits of 42 of the 56 signers and 5 other patriots. The artist sketched the individuals and the room from life.


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1965 Denver flood

Posted by Richard on June 17, 2015

Fifty years ago last night, the Plum Creek drainage south of Denver received 14 inches of rain in just 3 hours. That sent a massive amount of water into the South Platte River and right into the heart of Denver. Depending on who’s telling the story and where they were when they witnessed it, the wall of water was somewhere between 20 and 40 feet high. 9News has a pretty good piece on the flood, with videos, if you can read through it without accidentally clicking away (don’t click anywhere to the left or right of the story column).

That flood led to the building of Chatfield Dam southwest of Denver just a few years later. It (along with dams on Cherry Creek and Bear Creek) has prevented a repeat occurrence. Chatfield State Park is a major recreation area. But there’s not much recreating this year because a large portion of the park is covered in water. It’s designed to work that way; by using the surrounding park area for additional water storage, Chatfield Reservoir can cope with copious amounts of rainfall and snowmelt.

This year, it’s had to, and is at the highest level since it was built. Not only is an unusually large snowpack melting very fast, but in the six weeks since May 1, Denver has only had (depending on who’s counting and where they measure) 4-7 days without rain. This has so far been one of the wettest years on record in Denver. And the foothills west of Denver and Palmer Divide to the south have gotten much more rain than Denver.

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Our hero dead

Posted by Richard on May 25, 2015

“Flags In” for Memorial Day, Arlington National Cemetary. Photo from Isaac Wankerl (
The grave of his father, Maj. Max W. Wankerl, is in the foreground.

Memorial Day

by Edgar A. Guest (1881-1959)

The finest tribute we can pay
Unto our hero dead to-day,
Is not a rose wreath, white and red,
In memory of the blood they shed;
It is to stand beside each mound,
Each couch of consecrated ground,
And pledge ourselves as warriors true
Unto the work they died to do.


Into God’s valleys where they lie
At rest, beneath the open sky,
Triumphant now o’er every foe,
As living tributes let us go.
No wreath of rose or immortelles
Or spoken word or tolling bells
Will do to-day, unless we give
Our pledge that liberty shall live.
Our hearts must be the roses red
We place above our hero dead;
To-day beside their graves we must
Renew allegiance to their trust;
Must bare our heads and humbly say
We hold the Flag as dear as they,
And stand, as once they stood, to die
To keep the Stars and Stripes on high.


The finest tribute we can pay
Unto our hero dead to-day
Is not of speech or roses red,
But living, throbbing hearts instead,
That shall renew the pledge they sealed
With death upon the battlefield:
That freedom’s flag shall bear no stain
And free men wear no tyrant’s chain.


Today, please remember those who died “that liberty shall live.” I’m remembering my dad, Col. Samuel R. Combs — who, in the memorable words of Robert Denerstein, “answered his country’s call even before the phone rang.” I miss you, Papa.

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Aw, poor baby needs a union

Posted by Richard on April 1, 2015

My day started with preparing for a 7:30 AM videoconference with someone in Bangalore. It ended after a 6 PM videoconference with folks in Beijing and San Jose. As I was eating my late supper, I read the new issue of Reason magazine that arrived recently. It had a quote that just cracked me up.

It’s old, dating back to January, but it was new to me. A reporter for Politico named Mike Elk, apparently explaining one of the reasons he’s trying to unionize his employer, said “I can’t work the kind of hours I did when I was 24.”

Elk is 28.

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Celebrate human achievement tonight!

Posted by Richard on March 28, 2015

Tonight, from 8:30 to 9:30 in your time zone, the anti-technology, anti-human eco-crazies want you to celebrate their “Earth Hour” by turning off all your lights and appliances, huddling in the dark to atone for your “sins” against Gaia. As Edward Hudgins pointed out:

But this is another way of saying that we humans are actually a burden on the Earth. We don’t belong. We should apologize and feel guilty for every blade of grass we step on, every tree we cut down to build our homes, every bit of food we eat—in other words, we should feel guilty of our own existence. Of course, Earth Hour is wrapped up in touchy-feely theatrics to the effect that turning off our lights expresses our caring about “Gaia” without requiring us to actually think about what values we are actually accepting.

When a blackout occurs because of a storm or some other cause, when the lights, refrigerator, AC, heat, computers, and TVs go out, we don’t cheer, we curse the darkness. Earth Hour asks us to bring a curse down upon ourselves.

I hope you’ll join me instead in celebrating the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s Human Achievement Hour. Turn on lots of lights, play music, watch TV, get on the computer, call friends — in other words, use energy. And celebrate all the wonderful ways in which cheap, readily available energy and technological innovation in general — the products of human achievement — have improved human existence.

I plan to spend the hour creating the largest carbon footprint I possibly can without burning down something.

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Unusual vehicle sighting

Posted by Richard on March 28, 2015

So, I’d just stepped onto my porch to get the mail, when along came a shiny black London taxi cab, a.k.a. hackney carriage. It was right-hand drive, and I could see the meter flag through the front passenger-side window (although I don’t know if it was still connected to a functioning fare meter). It looked a lot like the picture below.

I don’t know if it belongs to a collector, an entrepreneurial Uber/Lyft driver with a unique marketing angle, or what. A search for “london cab denver” failed to turn up anything useful.

London taxi.jpg

London taxi” by Andreas TuscheOwn work. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.



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Bergdahl swap fiasco playing out as predicted

Posted by Richard on March 25, 2015

Like many others released from Guantanamo, at least three of the five Taliban commanders swapped for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl seem intent on rejoining the jihad. They won’t have to wait long.

The five are currently living in luxury in Dohar, Qatar, under the alleged supervision of that alleged ally of ours in the misnamed War on Terror. But their confinement to Qatar ends in May, and they’ll then be able to go where they please. Such as back to Helmand province to rejoin their comrades in arms, or maybe to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

Bergdahl, on the other hand, won’t be rejoining the war effort.

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who was freed by Afghan insurgents last May as part of an exchange for five Taliban prisoners, was charged Wednesday with having deserted his remote base before his capture in 2009.

The military charges, resulting from a long-awaited but tightly guarded investigation, include desertion and misbehavior before the enemy. A conviction could lead to a dishonorable discharge from the military and, in the extreme, life in prison for Sgt. Bergdahl.

The Bergdahl swap is playing out exactly as anyone with half a brain predicted.

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