Monday Open Thread



Rank and Organization: Captain (then 1st Lt.), U.S. Army, Company D, 5th Battalion, 7th Cavalry , 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile)
Place and Date: Republic of Vietnam, 25 April 1968
Date of Issue: 10/09/1969

Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Capt. Sprayberry, Armor, U.S. Army, distinguished himself by exceptional bravery while serving as executive officer of Company D. His company commander and a great number of the men were wounded and separated from the main body of the company. A daylight attempt to rescue them was driven back by the well entrenched enemy’s heavy fire. Capt. Sprayberry then organized and led a volunteer night patrol to eliminate the intervening enemy bunkers and to relieve the surrounded element. The patrol soon began receiving enemy machinegun fire. Capt. Sprayberry quickly moved the men to protective cover and without regard for his own safety, crawled within close range of the bunker from which the fire was coming. He silenced the machinegun with a hand grenade. Identifying several l-man enemy positions nearby, Capt. Sprayberry immediately attacked them with the rest of his grenades. He crawled back for more grenades and when 2 grenades were thrown at his men from a position to the front, Capt. Sprayberry, without hesitation, again exposed himself and charged the enemy-held bunker killing its occupants with a grenade. Placing 2 men to cover his advance, he crawled forward and neutralized 3 more bunkers with grenades. Immediately thereafter, Capt. Sprayberry was surprised by an enemy soldier who charged from a concealed position. He killed the soldier with his pistol and with continuing disregard for the danger neutralized another enemy emplacement. Capt. Sprayberry then established radio contact with the isolated men, directing them toward his position. When the 2 elements made contact he organized his men into litter parties to evacuate the wounded. As the evacuation was nearing completion, he observed an enemy machinegun position which he silenced with a grenade. Capt. Sprayberry returned to the rescue party, established security, and moved to friendly lines with the wounded. This rescue operation, which lasted approximately 71/2 hours, saved the lives of many of his fellow soldiers. Capt. Sprayberry personally killed 12 enemy soldiers, eliminated 2 machineguns, and destroyed numerous enemy bunkers. Capt. Sprayberry’s indomitable spirit and gallant action at great personal risk to his life are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.

53 comments to Monday Open Thread

  • Scott M.

    Tooth and claw

    Absolutely amazing footage of lions.

  • -fritz-

    Coffee, krullers and kooks!

    Just look around you, man! The world is teeming with them and they procreate!

  • Thank you, thank you, thank you, Capt. Sprayberry — one more real American hero!!!

  • -fritz-

    On a weird note, I read somewhere within the last couple of days, that Piers Morgan has changed his mind about the 2nd Amendment and now seems to be embracing it! Coulda knocked me over with a feather!

    Unfortunately I could not find a link to the article, so it may be baloney. One can always hope!

  • Scott M.

    I never have a kind word for the POTUS,but that was a pretty damn good commencement speech he gave to the men at Morehouse College in Atlanta.He damnded his own father.

  • JimmyC

    In the wake of the IRS scandals, liberals are swearing up and down that they are just as outraged about it as we are. Don’t believe them for a second. They want to use the IRS as a bludgeon against their political enemies, in exactly the way that this administration used it against the Tea Party. I’ve talked to liberals who admitted as much. One liberal friend of mine told me she wanted to encourage corporate “social justice” by having the IRS raise taxes on any company that didn’t pay its workers a fair share, embrace green energy policies, or any other laundry list item she came up with. Another liberal I debated online said he thought any church that refused to perform same-sex marriages should have its tax-exempt status revoked.

    If we don’t start shutting down these people at the ballot box, it’s only a matter of time before the IRS becomes nothing more than a tool to enforce the Democratic Party’s agenda. And liberals may not always admit it, but that’s exactly what they want. Why use a drone against your enemies when you can just audit them out of existence?

    • Rufus


      Unfortunately I am reluctant to believe the real problem this scandal brings to light will be successfully identified and addressed. Do a lot of democrats want to use government institutions to force the results they seek? Like your examples of using the IRS to “punish” corporations and churches? Sure! But is that very different from republicans who want to defund PBS and NPR and Planned Parenthood? I don’t think so. And that’s the real lesson we need to learn here (but won’t).

      Bush II (well, Bush I, too) funneled a lot of government money to defense contractors. Obama funnels a lot of government money to green energy start ups. The IRS under a democratic organization tried to limit the amount of money Conservative groups could retain. Many Conservative groups would like to see tax exempt status removed from left-leaning organizations.

      The real problem is that the federal government has taxing authority over our income and earnings through the abominal 16th amendment. As long as we cede that authority to them we grant them the right to determine what charity means and what education is and what earnings are and we agree to allow them to confiscate the fruits of our labor if we don’t conform to their definitions. A generation ago tuition paid to religious institutions was tax deductible. Now it’s not. A generation from now will the IRS have jurisdiction over what I toss in the collection plate at church?

      The Republic cannot be saved as long as we give the Congress authority to take any percentage of our earnings that they choose, whenever they choose. We even allow them make tax codes retroactively, despite the Constitution’s admonition against ex post facto and double jeopardy.

      • JimmyC

        But is that very different from republicans who want to defund PBS and NPR and Planned Parenthood?” Yes, because there is an inherent difference between raising taxes on an organization and refusing to subsidize it. No one is saying we should punish Planned Parenthood for existing, we just don’t want our taxpayer dollars supporting it. Big difference. As for your Bush II example, national defense is both a power and a responsibility of the federal government as outlined in our founding documents, so it’s justified to use taxpayer dollars for that. Nothing in the founding documents say that we need to subsidize abortions or All Things Considered. The comparison doesn’t work here.

        I agree 100% with your other point, though: we need to change the tax structure so that Congress can stop playing games with our money. I’d like to see (a) a flat tax replace the progressive income tax, and (b) a law passed stating that government spending cannot exceed a fixed percentage of the GDP- if you want to go a dollar beyond that limit, you have to cut it from somewhere else. Of course, no Republican has the guts to even propose either reform, so until that changes we need to deal with the reality we live in.

        • Rufus

          You and Outlaw are simply giving the Conservative argument.

          • -fritz-

            Liberals can be compared to a bunch of uppity people in a room full of foreigners, trying to communicate by yelling louder in English and believing that surely the ignorant foreigners will understand if they yell it louder! They believe that if they yell their stupid nanny rules or plans, repeating them over and over in a high shriek to a thinking person will actually make that person believe the BS they are cranking out! When you, the thinking person attempt to communicate the truth of the matter to them, the liberals, they cover their ears and do a childish “vocal screech” so they can’t hear, and thus won’t be responsible for hearing the truth and actually having to make a decision to either believe, or reject it!

          • You can call it the conservative argument, but when you twist the meanings of things to make a point, THAT is disingenuous no matter what side you say you represent. The things you mention are not analogous.

            • Rufus

              Outlaw, like you, I believe there is a correct answer here (the Constitution and its enumerated powers) and, like you I don’t believe the examples I gave are analogous, HOWEVER, to someone on the Left they are. They honestly believe there is a Republican-Big Business alliance that feeds a “war machine” for fun and profit, mostly profit. And, the reality is, like any government program that outlays gobs of money there were fiscal abuses in companies like Halliburton. To someone on the Left that’s no better than Solyndra. Actually, to them it’s worse.

              There are millions of people who believe President Obama directed Federal dollars to green energy companies and union causes to payback supporters of his campaign and supporters of other democratic elections (and I’m one of those millions).

              There are millions of people who believe Presidents Bush I and II led our nation into foreign wars to enrich defense contractors who supported their campaigns.

              That is the definition of an analogy.

              Like you, I have tremendous respect for both George Bush’s and do not believe for a second either man would commit troops to any cause they did not believe was in our national interest, nor would either Commander in Chief risk U.S. lives for profit. But my believing that is true doesn’t change the minds of the millions who don’t believe that is true.

              And this is precisely the point about my prior comment; when we get into a pissing contest over semantics like this we miss the more important, crucial point and we lose focus on the real solution; reigning the federal government back to the enumerated powers. This is why I stated I’m not optimistic we will see real change after this scandal. Scandals like these devolve too readily into the type of conversation we just had, then the next scandal pops up and we all move on.

              • JimmyC

                You’re arguing that we should scale back the tax system and the federal government’s powers- how is that not “giving the Conservative argument”, as you so dismissively called my argument? All I’m suggesting is that we shouldn’t subsidize left-wing institutions with our tax money, which you dismiss because the Left won’t agree with it. Then you take that argument to the ultra-Conservative degree and saying we should overhaul our entire system (something I agree with, BTW). Do you seriously think the Left won’t disagree with that, too?

                • Rufus


                  I believe any argument that focuses on details will likely fail. But a focus on broad concepts like “freedom” and “liberty” can succeed. Most people can wrap their heads around the general concept that taxing income is capricious and illiberal. Now, obviously, Congress will have to replace that system with some other form of taxation, and we’re all going to hate that too. But rather than make the argument about “scale” or how the money will be spent, focus on the easy to digest part of the unfairness of the government interfering with decisions made freely among those seeking work and those offering work.

                  Obama obviously wants an end to the coal industry. Rather than pushing legislation that specifically states that he’s back-dooring regulations that make coal economically impractical. You and I want a much smaller Federal government. How do we get there? Limit the amount of money it can spend. How do we do that? Again, follow their playbook, “Never let a crisis go to waste.”

                  The Left and Right are now equally concerned about an IRS that can come into their homes, businesses and not for profit organizations and make their lives hell. Foster that anger against the IRS to a campaign against the IRS and the 74,000 + page tax code. Who can defend that? It’s indefensible!

                  Simple, well defined goals that have mass appeal.

  • “Bush II (well, Bush I, too) funneled a lot of government money to defense contractors. Obama funnels a lot of government money to green energy start ups.”

    I take issue with the word “funneled”, it has a connotation of underhanded dealings. GW Bush spent more on defense because there was a war on. Money that was spent on defense, either gives a tangible object (like a jet or truck) or result (soldiers fed, supplies moved) for the most part (I am not so naive to believe that there is no waste in the DOD). This stands in marked contrast to green companies that the Obama administration has chosen to grant some of the government largesse that have not only not produced much of anything, but a lot of them have gone out of business.

    In your quest to be even handed you managed to use a poor example of Bush era spending, a more apt example would be the funds Bush spent on “no child left behind” and their demonstrated lack of result.

    • Rufus

      The purpose of my example was to show “left/right,” not efficiency. I support a strong defense and agree with your assessment of how it differs from “green” spending, but Lefties are as upset about Halliburton and money for weapons, etc. as righties are upset about green spending.

      • Rufus

        Sorry, was on my cellphone and didn’t have time to type a sufficiently, Rufus-length reply.

        However, Outlaw and JimmyC helped prove my point. That is the problem with focusing on the wrong problem. If we say it’s wrong to use the IRS to shut down Tea Party groups but it’s O.K. to not fund PBS it devolves into an argument between left and right, and what is the “public good,” etc. When, both sides should agree that Co

  • Learned today a co-worker’s producing and starring in a documentary about how the USA is knowingly using low-grade uranium in its weapons, which played a part in leading to increased suicides (18,000) among those serving in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as damaging Mother Earth. Movie also focuses on President Clinton signing the US up for the ICC before President GW Bush signed us out of the organization so that he (or his dad, or any US President) wouldn’t have to face War Crimes or Crimes against Humanity charges. Our resident vet Outlaw, or anyone else, wanna have some fun with this one?

    • Depleted uranium rounds were the weapon of choice in a tank war such as Desert Storm. The A-10 fired depleted uranium rounds, M-1 tanks had DU Sabot rounds and there were a few others.

      They were not and are not the bullet of choice today, because (A) we don’t need them and (II) we don’t need the contamination of the battlefield.

      A little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing.

  • Texacalirose

    Gee, it’s very testosteroney around here lately (NTTAWWT). My ‘puter is all cleaned up; I just have to pick it up and boot it up. Thereafter, I’ll spread my cheap perfume around this place again. I know y’all can hardly wait.

    • -fritz-

      Yes, we can’t wait! I’m tired of being the whipping boy around here and I need someone else to help with the heavy burden of it! Actual truth is that I have no one to snark at, so welcome home, Toots! 😀

  • Loyal Goatherd

    For those that missed it earlier today, Mein Gott, das bombers attacked again This thread will outlive us all, I fear.

  • Loyal Goatherd

    It’s time to shake things up! The Axolotl Song

  • Just horrifying stuff in Oklahoma. Any 3Ders, regs OR lurkers, who have friends/family there, our prayers are with you & yours.

    • -fritz-

      Definitely praying for them. My family and I were in Wichita Falls, TX in 1979 when an F-4 went through there and killed 46! Really frightening stuff. I really feel for them!

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