The Spotted Dragon 


What Is This All About???

I have watched with growing alarm the disintigration of the country as special interests, power-grabbing opportunists, and others rise in power, give away the wealth of the country, and sit idly by as the United States loses its national identity.

You might try to figure out which political party I belong to based on the descriptions on this webpage, but don't bother. I don't really consider myself a member of either of the two major political parties - or even one of the "fringe" parties. You will find parts of my personal ethics, ideas, and goals to be common to all of them. If there was a Common Sense Party, I believe I'd be a member of that one.

So who am I and why should you read this? Well, as to the latter - you can read this or not, it's a semi-free country. But you might find parts of this web page interesting. As to the former... keep reading.

About Me

I was born in West Virginia. My father was a self-educated architect who eventually rose to prominence in the historic preservation side of architecture, writing several books and working all over West Virginia, Maryland, Virginia, and other places. My mother worked for my father as a secretary. They worked out of the house in the early years, letting my parents raise five pretty successful sons in a great home environment. We went to church every Sunday; played on various church and school sports teams; sang in the choir; played in the band at school; passed newspapers (on foot for the most part); were active in the Boy Scouts (four Eagle Scouts, one Life Scout, and dad earned the Silver Beaver); and in general had a great childhood. We never had a whole lot of money, so each of us worked after school to earn what we needed to buy what we wanted. All of us eventually went to college (except one who joined the Army). All of this of course helped shape who I am today.

My personal life has been an interesting journey. Besides what was briefly mentioned above, I graduated from West Virginia Institute of Technology with a Bachelor of Science Computer Science degree and a Minor of Mathematics. After college, I went to work for the US Government in the Department of Defense. After a year or so, I got married and have remained married for well over 20 years. My work in the DoD has taken me to several countries where I've had the pleasure of working with our fantastic men and women in the military, along with counterparts in other countries. It has been an interesting and very rewarding career. Somewhere along the way I managed to earn a Masters of Science in Computer Science from Johns Hopkins University in Maryland.

Currently, I still work for the DoD and am stationed in San Antonio, Texas. I have been here for several years and it doesn't look like I'll be leaving any time soon.

My wife, who also works for the DoD in the same place I do, shows Appaloosa horses, and as you can see by the other parts of this web page, she is very good at what she does.

As for my hobbies, I have several. I started hunting a few years ago and continue to do so on an off-and-on basis, build and fly model rockets, bowl in a league after work and play poker several nights a week in a local poker league. I'm also planning on getting back into Scouting when my schedule allows. You can see I keep myself fairly busy.

That's pretty much it for me. If you want to discover more about me and my wife, explore the rest of this site. There are links on the left part of the page. If you have any other questions or comments, just send me an email.

My Views

Here is where I lay out my thoughts on various issues facing the US. If I don't cover something near and dear to you, just ask. My email address is above. There are several very divisive issues below, and I know I'll have half of the country mad at me for one thing or another, but lighten up! Not many of these issues are really even that important!

Let's go in alphabetical order. That way readers cannot infer the strength of my opinions based on which issue I choose to cover first.


This is probably one iof, if not the most divisive issue facing the country right now. You would think my upbringing as a Christian would have me thinking a certain way. But don't think that, and don't get all bent out of shape by what I say next.

I am not Pro-Choice or Pro-Life.

I have conflicting views on this subject. When does life start? At conception as some believe? At birth as others believe? Sometime inbetween? I don't know. You might think conception, it seems logical. But is that collection of cells really alive? In a way it is. Is it a person, to be given the full protection of the law? No, I don't believe so.

Look at it another way... if you want the Government to get involved and decree when life starts you start down a very slippery slope. Besides, where in the Constitution does it say anything about the Government having a role in an individual's medical care or abortion? Anyway, let's say the Government decides to say that life begins at conception. Interesting... what then do we do with mothers (or fathers) who smoke? Mothers who drink or do drugs or eat something the Government decides is bad for babies still in the womb? Charge them with child abuse or child endangerment? If a person kills a pregnant woman, at what point in her pregnancy do you charge the killer with killing two people? Do we do autopsies on all murdered women to find out if they got pregnant the night before? See what I mean?

I believe if you decide to have sex and get pregnant, you are responsible for that life being created - no matter what you believe about when life begins. If your personal beliefs allow you to abort that future child, then I will not stand in your way. It is not right for me to try to push my beliefs on you - it is your life and your option. Should the government be involved? Absolutely not. If it's not right for me to push my beliefs on you, then it's not right for the government to tell you what you have to do with that life growing in your womb. The two people who decided to create life have the obligation and responsibility to discuss the matter and decide together what to do.

People will ask - what about rape or incest? It's the same choice. Even though the woman (probably) didn't have a choice in the matter, it's still a decision she will have to make in these two unique cases. Realistically the father isn't involved in the decision, so it's ultimately the woman's choice. If she decides to go full term and have the child, what business is it of mine? Or yours? Or the Government?

What about late term abortions? Is this a different situation? Many would argue it is. Especially at the point where there is brain activity and a heartbeat. At this stage you could argue that life is present and the baby is now a person. I would support that argument.

So, ultimately, my opinion is that abortion should be legal and available in the US - IF the individual states determine it is legal in their state. Counseling should be available - but not necessarily mandatory - to all parties concerned. Attacks against clinics, hospitals, doctors, and patients should be met with the full weight of the law. Such attacks are terrorism, plain and simple, and should be treated as such.

This issue has divided this country to the point where this issue ALONE will cause some people to vote or not vote for a certain candidate. In my mind this is short-sighted on the voter's part. There are many more issues involved - too many to let one single issue decide your vote.


Boy, where to start. You may get the idea from reading more that I'm not tolerant of crime or criminals. You would be absolutely correct. You do not have the right to my stuff, my life, or anything else. Pretty much everything is a privilege that must be worked for. If you want to short-circuit the system, be prepared to pay for your transgressions.

First, crime is, and always will be, a serious issue. People will try to get away with whatever they can, be it petty theft or murder; that's just part of the dark side of human nature. A whole industry has grown up to help these criminals avoid punishment for their crimes. It's way past time to do something about it.

Punishment for crimes vary by wide degrees across the country. There should be some rigidly-applied standards for certain crimes. Judges should be made to abide by these guidelines, and if the guidelines are not specific enough, there should be a way for a judge to request clarification before passing sentence.

I'll lay out some broad categories below and my opinions on them. This section will be expanded as I think of categories to add.

Murder - This is the big one. Murderers have taken life and therefore have forfeited their right to life as a consequence. Don't give me some bleeding heart attitude about capital punishment. Let the punishment fit the crime. Undue pain and suffering? Give me a break. What about the pain and suffering this person inflicted on the victim(s)? I would like to say once again that the puishment should fit the crime. But I can be lenient - death by lethal injection is fine. One drug to put them to sleep (so what if the needle "hurts") and the rest to kill them. That's good enough for me and it should be good enough for society. And it shouldn't take 20 years to exact justice. With the technology available today the law should be able to prove beyond a resonable doubt and the appeals process should be able to be shortened. There must be no doubt about the defendant's guilt. If it is determined that people lied to get that person convicted, whether they be witnesses or government agents (police, etc) those people should be tried for Attempted Murder. Sure, there are degrees of murder - this paragraph deals with First Degree.

Rape - This is a heinous crime and deserves harsh punishment. Mostly, I equate rape with murder. Rapists, especially child rapists, deserve no less than death. If not that, then how about castration? Along with a lengthy jail sentence. No less than 30 years - mandatory. No plea bargains to reduce the sentence to time served and probation, which has happened in way too many instances.

Drunk Driving - This crime is one that affects way too many people in the U.S. each year. I don't believe people who drive drunk should get their license back in less than 6 months for a first offense and after a third offense they should never be allowed to have a license again. Those who drive without a license after getting it taken away for this offense should be severely punished with a very long jail sentence. There is absolutely no excuse for driving drunk. None. If you kill someone while driving drunk you should be sentenced the same as muder. It is the same as going up to someone and shooting them in the head - except drunk drivers often kill more than one person at a time.

Robbery/Theft - This category refers to theft at any level. Major corporate theft all the way down to a person stealing a pack of gum from a convenience store. At the very least, the criminal should be made to pay all costs for the victim to recover (materially) from the robbery, even if the items stolen are recovered intact. The criminal should be made to do time in proportion to what was stolen. First offense should be something like one FULL hour behind bars for each dollar or portion thereof. Time served awaiting sentencing should NOT count towards jail time. Second offense raises the time to a FULL 12 hours per dollar, third offense raises the time again, this time to one FULL day per dollar. Robbery and theft are not "victimless crimes." Too often people who steal are not required to do any time at all, leaving them the impression that robbery is a "safe" crime to commit. People who also injure or kill people during robbery attempts should be punished at a much more harsh level.

Drugs - There are two real classes of drug criminals: producers and users. Pushers are considered "producers" in my book. Users should be punished with forced rehab and education. Second and subsequent offenses should include jail time and more rehab. Producers are the worst part of the equation. They make their money preying on the weak-minded and weak-willed. Jail time should start at 5 years for a street pusher all the way to death for major traffickers. Of course there are those who argue the "War on Drugs" is a failure and should be stopped. Those people are right to a certain extent. The Federal Government really has no say in this - there is nothing in the Constitution giving the Feds the power to control drugs. Just as there is nothing there about alcohol (Prohibition was a useless gesture that only made the criminals rich - just like drugs are doing now). If you want the Government involved, it should be done the same way as with alcohol. You may think I'm crazy, but if you're going to be a Constitutional candidate, you can't pick and choose the things you want to be in the Constitution (or not in there as the case may be).


The US currently has a weak economy. But the fundamentals - those people who work for a living - are strong and will pull us out of these dark times. If the media and the politicians would just SHUT UP and not try to scare everyone to death about the economy, things would start to turn around. And quit trying to pass "stimulus" packages that don't have anything to do with stimulating the economy!!!

While I am sympathetic to those who don't have a great lot in life, there are ways to get around those problems and work yourself out of poverty. Notice I said "work." You can't get something for nothing, at least you shouldn't be able to. Government needs to get out of people's lives and force them to support themselves. Welfare should be reserved for those who absolutely CANNOT work in any way. I work with someone who is paralyzed from the waist down - and he puts in a full day's work every day. In addition, we have blind people who work every day. Don't tell me you can't work because you're in a wheelchair or blind or deaf or anything like that.

I will be the first to admit I'm not a economist and don't really know much about the economy. But who really does? Certainly not our political leaders. That's why there are people who advise the leaders - people who know the economy and how it really works. I'm not sure they're being heard though. The economy needs a good correction. It's been up for way too long, it needs to slide a little.

The economy needs to grow and remain strong. Incentives for companies to move jobs out of the country need to be halted. The US worker needs to realize they receive wages and benefits based on the work they do, not on what some union says they deserve. Uh oh, I'm bashing unions. Unions are a good thing for pointing out employer transgressions and giving emplyees a sense of self-worth. But they (in part) have helped to destroy the workforce that supports them by forcing employers to give workers so much in the way of benefits and pay, that it's cheaper to move jobs overseas than pay the good, hardworking, American worker! Many unions spend more on political contributions than they do supporting the workers they are supposed to be helping.

One more thing... the Congress needs to rein in spending. Their practice of throwing away billions of dollars on earmarks has got to stop. Let's make a rule that anything that goes into a spending bill must have a vote. If the Congress would take all the money they waste on earmarks every year and put it towards actually fixing things that are broken (like infrastructure, Social Security, military veterans benefits, and much more), we wouldn't be in such bad shape. Ask your elected leaders about that some time.


The future of any country is its children. How they are raised and educated will determine how that country fares in the future. Nothing should deter the US from having the best educated populace in the world. We have the people and the resources to do this - we just need the national will.

Our school system needs to get back to the basics and teach the children. Overloading them with homework will not work. Never has, never will. Teach history, math, science (none of that foolish "creationism" vs "evolution" nonsense - teach them both and let the kids decide), biology, etc. Take end of year standardized tests out of the system. All these do (and we see this in Texas) is cause the teachers to teach to the test. Let the instructors or subject matter experts create standardized end of semester exams based on the materials taught! Let's see what the kids learn and grade them appropriately. If some fail, hold them back. The damage to their fragile egos will be offset by actually learning the material; and they will hopefully learn some resposibility for their actions! If kids know they won't be held back if they fail a subject, what's the incentive to actually study and learn? We are producing a nation of uneducated adults. I seriously fear for the stability of the country in the near future.

Sports in school is a good thing, but not the ONLY thing. When sports overtakes education in importance, there is a problem. When atheletes are told "you didn't come to this school to learn, you can here to play sports for me" then there is a problem. When coaches are paid multi-million dollar contracts there is a problem. Let's get back to educating the children. If you have less than a C average, you should not be allowed to play sports (or any other extracurricular activity). Period. And don't take it easy on the atheletes either - not many of them will ever play professional sports, so they'll need their education to get a decent paying job when they finish school. Coaches that lobby for atheletes to receive better grades than their work deserves should be fired.

Remove politics from the classroom - except for political science classes. There is no place in the school system for partisan political posturing of any kind.

Religion - all religions - should be taught to the children. Children of all faiths, or none, would benefit greatly by learning the traditions and culture of people all around the world. Besides, many if not all of those religions and clutures exist in the US also, and our children will have to deal with others from those faiths eventually. Teaching the children tolerance for opposing points of view is a good thing and should be a priority. None of that "separation of church and State" nonsense either. Show me where it says that in the Constitution. The First Amendment doesn't say that, does it? I didn't think so.

Languages are good for children to learn, and they should be taught languages from grade school when they are still able to easily learn new languages. Other countries stress languages, and you will find children in (for example) South Korea who are able to speak English almost as well as they speak Korean. We should strive to be a member of the world community at least in language education. There is great debate right now over schools having bilingual education. I don't have a problem with that as long as the primary language being taught is English.

Let's take away all of those fancy incentives for school systems the government hands out. Let's let the Department of Education work with actual educators to create school curriculum which will point our youth towards their future.


Who out there believes the government is too small? Yea, me too. Government is way too big. It's involved in too many things it has no business being involved in. Government should be reduced to its basics - protect the country and its interests.

There are way too many agencies in the Federal Government with way too many employees. Government is not efficient at any level. Agencies need to be examined from top to bottom and hard cuts need to be made. Sure, it will put people out of work and I understand that. But shrinking the size of government is a good thing for the country.

Let's go take a close look at the Constitution and find out just what the federal government should be doing (and is allowed to do) and get back to that. Most all of the things the federal government is doing now should be the job of the individual states.

Sure, we didn't get here overnight and we won't solve these problems overnight either. It's taken over 100 years to screw things up to this point and to make people so dependent on Government that they can make a "comfortable" living not working. It's a generational change. Don't expect to make things all better in four years, or even eight. It will take many years and many Presidents and Congresspeople to fix. But we have to elect the right people, or we will end up with riots in the street and a government that can't do anything but opress the people. Civil war or revolution follows... and who really wants that?


Before I start on this subject let me quote something: "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." Sound familiar? It should - this is the 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution.

Limits on the ownership of "arms" is prohibited by the Constitution. Of course the framers could not envision things like tanks, missiles, and nuclear weapons - so rightly the ability to "bear" these things is limited. However, other arms - to include pistols, shotguns, and rifles are standard "militia" type arms which a legal, non-criminial citizen of the United States should be allowed to bear. There are many laws on the books restricting the ownership of guns. These, given the Second Amendment, should be illegal. However, rulings from the Supreme Court and other state courts have "clarified" the intent of the Constitution.

Banning guns does not make a free or safe society. The old adage - "if having a gun is illegal, only criminals will have guns" - is quite true, not matter how you spin it. Look at the District of Columbia. There has been a strict gun ban there for years, yet the District is constantly in the top of the murder rate for the US. If having gun control laws makes society safer, then the District of Columbia should be the safest city in the US. Having a ban on guns only prevents law-abiding citizen from owning a gun and being able to defend themselves against crime. Texas has had a concealed carry law for years, yet the state's gun crime statistics are quite low when compared to states without such a law.

You may think I'm some right-wing gun nut. Far from it. I didn't own a gun until about 1994 and my father, despite (or maybe because of) his military service, would not allow a gun in the house during my childhood. I had a BB gun for a short time, but only because I borrowed it from a friend. I am a gun owner now although I don't currently have a concealed carry permit. I have two pistols and two rifles, and my wife has a pistol and two rifles. We have both been hunting and plan to continue hunting in the future. I don't mind submitting to a background check before buying a handgun - I have nothing to hide. I am opposed, however, to the government (state or federal) telling me I don't have a right to own a gun.

Gun crime is a serious issue. I didn't cover this in my section about crime but here is what I believe should be law - if you use (or have in your posession) a gun, even a toy one, in the commission of ANY crime, your sentence should be a mandatory 5 years in prison without parole, added to whatever sentence you get for the crime you committed. A second offense should give an additional 10 years, and a third offense should give you life. If you actually HARM someone while committing the crime, your sentence would have an additional 10 years without parole added. With no options for a judge to change those sentences.

Health Care

A free-market system of health care brings about innovation in health care. Managed care by the government should not even be an issue of debate. The government has a hard enough time doing anything efficiently, can you even try to imagine the government managing the health care of the US? The same government that can't run an effective Post Office, that has bankrupted Social Security? I can, and it's not a pretty thought. Let's let the market decide on health care issues.

Should there be regulations in place? Sure. The health insurance companies are way out of control. Health care is not affordable for millions. But is it the government's job to make sure everyone has insurance? No - personal responsibility plays a large role here. It is your responsibility to provide for the health and welfare of your family. Health insurance can be a part of that. So too can health savings plans (which I wholeheartily endorse). One does not necessarily need to have health insurance to enjoy a healthy life. But if you don't have insurance, you should be responsible enough to put away some money every paycheck to pay those bills when they come up.


Immigration is a good thing for the US. Legal immigration. Illegal immigration, however, is not.

Every person in the United States illegally is a criminal, and you already know my views on crime. The term "undocumented immigrant" is a dodge and shouldn't be given traction as a description of illegals. First, let's enforce the laws already on the books about illegal entry into the country. Increase the Border Patrol and, if necessary, augment them with the National Guard. Give the Guard the ability to arrest and hold suspected illegals.

Let's create a series of tent jails in border states and hold illegals there when they are caught. Keep them in these jails for three months at a minimum for their first offense. Double the time for each additional offense. Set up a national database of illegals and fingerprint and photograph every single one caught crossing the borders. "Coyotes" should be held in a separate jail for a year minimum, longer if possible. Human trafficing is a horrible offense and should be treated harshly. If an illegal dies while under the care of a Coyote, that person should be charged with murder.

Build a physical fence? Sure, if it doesn't bankrupt, cause serious ecological problems, us or cause other vital services to be swept aside. Otherwise, increasing the Border Patrol (and National Guard) and the increase of penalties for illegals should be enough to help stem the tide of the invasion.

Children born in this country are not necessarily automatic citizens. From the Fourteenth Amendment of the US Constitution: "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside." What does this mean? Is an illegal alien subject to the jurisdiction of the US? If not, then their children born in the US are not citizens. If so, they are - but the parents still are not.

I am happy to read that a member of Congress has introduced a bill to change the immigration law to state that only children of LEGAL resident mothers are automatic citizens. This is a great idea and has been a long time coming. I hope it passes.

Enforcement: every person arrested for any crime in the US should be checked for legal status. If you are in the country illegally, you should serve the sentence for your crime in the regular prison population. Once you have served that time, you should then be sent to one of the tent prisons on the border to serve your sentence for illegal entry. Once your sentence there is complete, you will be deported to your country of origin.

"Sanctuary Cities" are already illegal. The idea of not enforcing US law by not checking a criminal's legal status is absurd. Any city or state which has this policy should be penalized in some way. Some have advocated a loss of highway funds. I don't necessarily agree with this; taking away those funds hurts the whole state or city, and can ultimately endanger the health and safety of the populace. What is the best solution? I'll leave that up to the lawyers.


Our military is the finest in the world and it should be treated as such. The brave men and women who protect our nation and its interests deserve the best equipment and training they can get. For the job they do they are woefully underpaid but they keep on doing what they do, day in and day out.

Any person who knowingly damages the military mission in any way should be punished severely - whether they are in the military or not. For example, there was a recent case where military members defrauded the military by steering contracts to companies that gave kickbacks to those members. Those people - both military and contractor- should be severely punished. In a time of war they should, at most, be charged with treason against the United States.

Similarly, those members of the government (or anyone else with knowledge) who expose military operations in a time of war should automatically be charged with treason. There is no excuse for this behavior, especially those who are elected to serve the public. If you disagree with the President or military commanders, fine. There are legal avenues to take to show your displeasure.

We all know there is waste and abuse in the military and in other areas of government. Deal with it - find that waste and abuse and punish the offenders. Government and military service should not be a lifelong occupation automatically. People should be able to be fired for their offenses.

National Security

Having worked in the security arena pretty much my entire adult life, I have some very definite opinions on security. However, I'll reduce my thoughts down to a few basics.

We in the security arena live by a code of "need to know." If you don't need to know something, you don't learn about it. The same should go for anyone when dealing with security matters. Military plans, computer codes, encryption, etc. should all be covered under this thought process.

Where you get into trouble with the security apparatus is when you learn of something and then tell someone else who does not need to know. That is known as a "leak" and there are laws in place which are supposed to deal with this crime. In a time of war, leaks of miltary plans cause harm to military forces and should be dealt with harshly - treason is a serious crime. For example: members of Congress who are brifed on military operations or security operations and then come out and tell their staff or members of the press about those operations. This causes harm to the United States and those people, the congressmen and the reporters who write the story, should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Social Security

This section isn't totally about Social Security. It also covers other entitlement spending.

Social security is not. People need to be responsible for their own retirement plans. Business can help with that. If you have a job, you have the ability to save money towards retirement. Don't expect the government to provide for you - social security may not even be there by the time I retire, even though I've been paying into it for over 25 years! Forget about it for the younger workforce. Congress has done you in by stealing from the "trust fund" for years. Let's try something radical - let people "opt out" of Social Security and take their future into their own hands. There are lots and lots of programs out there for people to invest in. Let's let them do it. Social Security is a pittance and doesn't provide enough to live on now - what do you think it'll look like in 10 years? Or 20?


Our current tax code is a joke. It is way too complicated and it allows those who should be paying the bulk of the taxes too many opportunities to avoid paying taxes. There are also complaints about illegals not "contributing" by not paying taxes, but that's kind of an absurd argument so I won't go there. Like it or not, every legal resident of the United States is obligated to pay taxes to the government.

What's my solution? Scrap the personal income tax in favor of a "consumption" tax. Amend the Constitution to abolish the income tax. Anything anyone purchases, with the exception of food (essentials only) and basic services (electricity, natural gas, etc.), has a federal tax associated with it. This way, every citizen pays their fair share of taxes every day. This tax affects the rich and the poor equally since everyone buys something at some point. What would be the tax rate? I'm not sure, I haven't studied the total purchases of people in the US on an average basis and what the total cost of running the government is. Likely the tax will be something on the order of 20%. That's a lot of money, but what would your savings be if you didn't have to pay personal income tax? Personally, I pay over 48% of my salary to taxes before I see a dime. I wouldn't mind keeping some of that.

Actaully, I've been reading a lot about something called the Fair Tax. It's almost what I outlined above, but much more well thought out. Take a look at their web page. I would support this plan wholeheartedly.

Another plan I would support is the Flat Tax. One rate for everyone, no deductions. Except possibly for charitable donations, but if you open that door it would allow Congress to start srewing around with the tax code again, and in a few years it would be as convoluted and Byzantine as it is now.

The government's job after that is to spend the money wisely. There are lots of examples where the government just wastes billions of dollars every year.

Want More?

Do you want to hear more common sense opinion? Write to me and ask. I'll be glad to post a list of questions and my opinions on those topics.

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