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Richard Allen Smith
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Blog Entries by Richard Allen Smith

Tim Brando Is Wrong About Everything

(201) Comments | Posted April 30, 2013 | 8:24 AM

There was a time when self-righteous segregationists just wanted to be left alone. If you wanted to integrate your schools, your churches, your bus stations, and your water fountains, that was fine. But those segregationists had a way of life and beliefs, some argued religions, which they had to preserve....

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Military Voters Deserve a Mail Ballot

(2) Comments | Posted April 23, 2012 | 12:01 PM

I am a United States Army veteran who served on active duty for five years, including a 14-month deployment to Afghanistan with the 82nd Airborne Division. And I am a voter.

This year, Colorado lawmakers can pass a bill that will protect the right to vote for...

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Don't Play Wall Street Roulette With Military Retirement

(98) Comments | Posted August 18, 2011 | 5:18 PM

This is unacceptable. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta has confirmed reports that the Department of Defense is considering cutting and privatizing military retirement:

According to CBS, the plan "would eliminate the familiar system under which anyone who serves 20 years is eligible for retirement at half their salary. Instead,...
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No, Rep. West, That's Not How We Speak in the Military

(205) Comments | Posted July 22, 2011 | 4:59 PM

It shouldn't be any surprise to anyone that Rep. Allen West (R-FL) went on an unhinged tirade against Representative Debbie Wasserman Shultz this week, merely for doing her job as a member of Congress and debating West on the budget. The Congressman has a history of being little more...

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On Social Media, VA is Getting it Right

(0) Comments | Posted March 21, 2011 | 10:32 AM

The Department of Veteran Affairs is coming under fire for allegedly not effectively using social media. Maybe someone has legitimate beef with what the Office of New Media at VA is doing, but all I can talk about is my experience with them.

As a new media professional, I...

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Why Alabama vs. Auburn Matters

(20) Comments | Posted November 23, 2010 | 12:12 PM

I still remember the moment. I was less than five years old. It was in Albertville, Alabama. My brother and I were playing in the living room when I decided to climb on the foot stool. This was Alabama, after all. We didn't have ottomans. Just foot stools.

I climbed...

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TCU/Boise St. Championship Will End Hopes for All Mid-Majors

(20) Comments | Posted November 9, 2010 | 10:40 AM

The chorus of hate directed at the BCS has often pointed to a particular scenario for leading to the systems downfall: a non-BCS school playing for or actually winning a BCS title. My contention has long been that this is an errant assumption. In reality, nothing would do more to...

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Toomey Calls Troop Bonuses "Wasteful"

(134) Comments | Posted October 1, 2010 | 1:08 PM

In what might be one of, if not the most underreported comments by a candidate in the 2010 races, Pennsylvania Senate candidate and former Congressman Pat Toomey in June let the truth slip out. During a press conference where he was challenged for his vote against a $1,500 combat bonus...

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The New Poll on DADT is Shady and Wrong

(4) Comments | Posted August 11, 2010 | 5:30 PM

Bigot and anti-military hack Elaine Donnelly is at it again with her Orwellian-named Center for Military Readiness. For those unfamiliar with Donnelly's "work," here is video of her getting completely owned in front of the House Armed Services Committee by Iraq War Veteran Rep. Patrick Murphy (D-PA):


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The Most Important Film of the Post-9/11 Generation

(7) Comments | Posted August 10, 2010 | 1:05 PM

This weekend, I found myself unexpectedly outside of my mid-sized Alabama town and in Dallas, Texas. While looking for things to do to fill out this unanticipated trip, I noticed that Restrepo, a documentary about an infantry platoon's year in Afghanistan's Korengal Valley, was playing. The film has been...

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Banks Are Scamming Dead Soldiers' Families

(2) Comments | Posted August 5, 2010 | 4:11 PM

Banks that used to distribute SGLI funds are apparently engaging in a shameless scam that uses SGLI money entitled to Gold Star families to make profits for themselves.

The scam works like this: instead of sending the family the money, the banks that used to distribute the funds...

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Obama Administration Sets the Standard for Veterans Care

(5) Comments | Posted July 9, 2010 | 1:36 PM

Post-traumatic stress disorder is the signature injury of the post-9/11 combat veteran. For years, as Veterans returned home with the invisible wound, VA red-tape has made it difficult to obtain a disability rating for the condition. Strange rules make it nearly impossible to prove the affliction. For example, Veterans have...

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An Open Letter to Senator Scott Brown (R-MA) Regarding "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"

(3) Comments | Posted May 26, 2010 | 2:12 AM

Dear Senator Brown,

My name is Richard Allen Smith and from 2003 to 2008 I served in the United State Army, including a 14 month tour in Afghanistan with the 82nd Airborne Division. Throughout my military career it pained me, as a straight Soldier, to see my qualified gay comrades...

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Why Fox News Rejected our Clean Energy Ad

(24) Comments | Posted May 5, 2010 | 1:59 PM

When VoteVets.org released our latest clean energy ad titled "Alarm" we approached Fox News about making an ad buy on their network. To me, while Fox News' neoconservative constituency usually has misguided ideas about how to secure our country, they at least understand that it is important.

As

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VFW Lies for the GOP, Attempts to Kill Health Care

(0) Comments | Posted March 21, 2010 | 4:41 PM

Among all of the Congressional elections in 2006, there were two that were particularly interesting. In Virginia, an incumbent Republican Senator who received a deferment from service in Vietnam was endorsed by the VFW's political action committee over a former Navy Secretary who was awarded the Navy Cross while...

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The Hurt Locker: Inaccurate and Disrespectful

(73) Comments | Posted March 8, 2010 | 10:11 AM

I tuned in to the Oscars last night in hopes of seeing my favorite film of the year clean up. Critics lauded the performances in my favorite film, a movie about a close-knit team with unique characteristics engaging in combat in a far away land. I liked the film because...

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Vet Bloggers Storm America's Second Largest Agency

(1) Comments | Posted February 18, 2010 | 11:02 AM

To most American Veterans, the Department of Veterans' Affairs, second only to the Department of Defense in size and funding amongst executive departments, is a mythical beast living somewhere in the the annals of Government, untouchable and unknowable to the common former servicemember. Still others see VA in an even...

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I Will Forever Respect Admiral Mike Mullen

(2) Comments | Posted February 2, 2010 | 3:39 PM

When Admiral Mike Mullen reentered Room G50 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building this afternoon, he was no doubt exhausted from number-crunching and being berated over issues outside his purview before the Senate Armed Services Committee most of the morning. He could have assumed any number of tactics for the...

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Progressive Dixie: A Rare Occasion for Pride

(2) Comments | Posted December 11, 2009 | 2:42 PM

Since January 1, 1993, it's been hard to be a Democrat in the heart of Dixie, the great State of Alabama. That was the date that the University of Alabama won their last national college football title. That, combined with the fact that the state has not gone blue since...

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Afghanistan: A Broken Promise to Military Families

(5) Comments | Posted December 3, 2009 | 5:27 PM

For the last several years, our Armed Forces have been plagued by a lack of what is known as dwell time -- the amount of time Soldiers have at home with their families between deployments. In 2008, I was personally assured by an Obama campaign surrogate that dwell time would...

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