Monthly Archives: March 2014

Attorney General Eric Holder – A Partisan Idealogue

In still another hallmark of this most inept presidential administration, we consider President Obama’s appointment of Eric Holder as United States Attorney General. This selection was questionable, to say the least, on the basis of Mr. Holder’s background, and his conduct in office has shown that he is nothing more than a tool of the Obama administration.

The term “wimp” in describing Mr. Holder comes to mind. It is no doubt a pejorative word but its use here finds support in the dictionary. Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, Eleventh Edition, defines wimp as a weak, cowardly, or ineffectual person. The use of the disjunctive in the definition makes its use appropriate because in my view Mr. Holder is definitely ineffectual although the other definitions may also apply, depending on whom you ask. Other individuals and groups go even further, seeking his impeachment on the grounds of corruption.

Mr. Holder was President Obama’s first cabinet appointment. The two first met in 2004 and hit it off immediately. Therefore the appointment smacks of cronyism. But more than that, one need only peruse freelance writer Ron Kolb’s detailed and informative article (available on Google) for insights into Mr. Holder’s background. Far from having strong credentials for the post, his background is questionable in terms of his lack of, shall we say, unwavering support for law enforcement. One notable instance occurred when as Deputy Attorney General, he knowingly stood silent to the proposed pardon by President Clinton of convicted swindler/fugitive Marc Rich, which he later admitted to have been a mistake. On another occasion he recommended clemency to President Clinton for members of FALN, a Puerto Rican terrorist group. This is not the type of background you would want to find in the nation’s top cop. His controversial past compels the conclusion that he should never have been appointed in the first place.

Currently, Mr. Holder is refusing to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the IRS scandal. This is the case where the IRS is suspected of targeting Tea Party and other conservative groups seeking section 501(c)(4) tax exemption status for special treatment, i.e., delays in processing and unnecessary and improper inquiries. The IRS, one of the most feared of government agencies, is supposed to be impartial in the discharge of its duties. Yet President Obama told Fox News journalist Bill O’Reilly during an interview on Super Bowl Sunday that there is not even a “smidgeon” of corruption surrounding this case. Yet if it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck…

Indeed, if there is no corruption and nothing to hide over this issue, it is puzzling that IRS official Lois Lerner has repeatedly taken the 5th amendment in refusing to answer congressional questions during its efforts to investigate the matter. Instead of a special prosecutor, President Obama has appointed a member of his administration and a generous contributor to his campaign, an individual clearly partisan to the president, to conduct an investigation. This is a blatant and egregious abuse of power which should not be allowed. The real question which needs to be answered is what person or persons approved Lois Lerner’s conduct. It remains to be seen if the investigation reaches this issue.

But protecting the administration in the IRS targeting scandal is not the only controversial act by the Attorney General. Mr. Holder has failed to turn over requested records by the House Oversight Committee concerning operation “Fast and Furious.” For this blatant coverup, in June, 2012, after a 16-month investigation, the Attorney General was held in Contempt of Congress, both civilly and criminally, the first cabinet member to be so cited. Executive privilege has also been asserted over those records. Although all of the facts are not known, thousands of automatic weapons were apparently purchased from gun dealers by Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms and Explosives agents and sold to gun traffickers. This was done in an apparent effort to trace the guns to drug cartel users in Mexico. However there was no follow through. Two of the weapons were later discovered at the murder scene of Agent Brian Terry in December, 2011. Mr. Holder has been accused of lying to the House Committee about when he first heard of this operation.

There are many more instances where Mr. Holder’s conduct can be seen as undermining the country’s security. But in the interests of brevity they will not be described now. Suffice it to say that
the country needs and deserves to have a tough and effective Attorney General, not one who is clearly devoted to protecting his benefactor, i.e., the person who appointed him in the first place.

Copyright©Arnold G. Regardie. All rights reserved.


Filed under active voice, clear writing, good diction, history, sound sentence structure, tips for good diction, Writing Improvement

Hillary Clinton – The Wrong Woman, At the Wrong Place, At the Wrong Time

To borrow the refrain from an old Vaughn Monroe song, “…there I go, there I’ve said it again.” But it bears repeating: Hillary Clinton should not be the next president.

I’m sorry to be so dogmatic about it (well, not really), but I’d like to make one thing perfectly clear (with apologies to President Nixon): it’s fine to elect a woman president. The time is right for it. But it should be the right woman, who is not Hillary Clinton. Not now, not tomorrow, not ever. She simply does not have the credentials including, but not limited to, integrity, experience, and ability.

With the 2016 presidential elections still in the distance, this article may seem a little premature. But I don’t think so. The liberal media is obsessed with trying to emboss Hillary, apparently the odds-on favorite to win the democratic nomination for president, with a tinge of gold – but it’s fools gold at best. I think this blog is therefore timely.

The reason I am so adamant on this issue is because Hillary is simply unqualified, inexperienced, and incompetent to be president. Lets not make the same mistake with her that we made with President Obama. The problem with Hillary is that she has not demonstrated any leadership qualities, no strength of character, no ability to make the tough decisions that are required of a president. She boasted of her “White House experience,” during her last presidential bid. But the truth of the matter is that she had no experience that qualified her to be president.

She has served as a U.S. senator from New York, parachuting in on the coattails of her husband Bill, an impeached president who disgraced himself, his family, his country, and the White House while president. But as a senator she created no record of accomplishment that she can point to, none.

She served as Secretary of State under President Obama, an unqualified and inexperienced appointee who had no previous experience in affairs of state, no record of any kind, no teaching, no lecturing, no writing, nothing that could be used to show experience or knowledge in that area. The main result of that four year tenure: four Americans are dead from the Benghazi attack, including our ambassador. And there has yet to be any determination as to who in the administration is responsible for that tragedy. As the top dog in the state department during that attack, she must be held accountable.

There is also the matter of her credibility. The well respected, syndicated columnist, the late William Safire, labeled her a “congenital liar.” Not without reason. Safire’s article, published in the New York Times on January 8, 1996 entitled “Essay; Blizzard of Lies,” is compelling reading, starting with the opening lines that draw attention to her propensity to “mislead, and to ensnare her subordinates and friends in a web of deceit.”

She also lied, together with President Obama, about the Benghazi attack, falsely claiming that it was due to a spontaneous reaction to a You Tube posting. At the time the statements were made, the White House and the state department had facts indicating the attack was made by terrorists.

And then there’s the blatant lie made during her presidential bid that she landed on the tarmac in Bosnia under sniper fire. She later recanted, admitting it was a “mistake.” This woman has no credibility and is a far, far cry from having the integrity to be president. We’ve seen enough of presidential lies from the present administration. To elect Hillary, who has a proven history of
lying, is simply unacceptable.

One last point concerning the issue of Hillary’s credibility or lack thereof: credibility is a most important trait in everyday life, but especially politics. As a retired trial lawyer, I can point to a California jury instruction which can be requested if the evidence justifies it, i.e., if a party or a witness is caught in a lie. The jury instruction, “falso in uno, falso in omnibus,” simply means that if the party or witness has lied about one thing, he/she arguably can be found to have lied about everything. This jury instruction, if given by the trial judge, can be a devastating weapon in final argument. It can destroy an entire case. Thus the issue presents itself, in view of Hillary’s track record of lying when the occasion suits her, how can anything she says now be believed?

We need to restore the American spirit, which seems to be lagging these days, quite a bit. Hillary is not the answer. She is undoubtedly the golden girl of the liberal media and the darling of the democratic party. But make no mistake – to put her in position as president of the United States would be an unmitigated disaster for this country. The country needs to elect a proven leader as the next president. Let the Obama calamity be a lesson to the American electorate: stay away from unqualified, inexperienced presidential candidates.

Copyright©Arnold G. Regardie. All rights reserved.


Filed under active voice, clear writing, good diction, history, tips for good diction, Writing Improvement

A “Jolly” Time In Florida – The Portent of Things To Come

The election of Republican David Jolly over highly thought of Democrat Alex Sink in a Florida district carried by President Obama both times in his election bids is more than just another congressional election – it was an advance signal of the public’s unhappiness with the president’s signature healthcare plan as well as his overall job performance. In this contest, although the democrats outspent the GOP 4-1, it wasn’t enough. With midterm congressional elections approaching in November, the handwriting on the wall becomes clearer every day: public disenchantment with this administration will continue to be a serious obstacle for those democrats up for reelection.

With the president’s approval rating sinking to a new 42% low, and controversies swirling around him, it is no secret that this administration has become a train wreck waiting to occur. It is more than just the disastrous roll out of Obamacare that is roiling the public, it’s also that many other questions remain unanswered. Serious questions exist as to the president’s ability to provide leadership in view of the failure to enforce his “red line in the sand” over Syria’s chemical weapons as well as his failure to stand up to Russian president Putin over the Ukraine and the Crimea. There can be little doubt that President Obama appears weak in the eyes of the world, not to mention his own country.

The stagnant economy and the number of Americans out of work continues to plague the president. The failure of anyone in the administration, past or present, to take responsibility for the deaths of four Americans in the Benghazi attack as well as the failure of anyone in the administration to be held accountable for the IRS scandal also continues to haunt the president. The latter issue is particularly vexing in view of the president’s assertion during the Bill O’Reilly interview on Super Bowl Sunday that there was not a “smidgeon of corruption” to be associated with it, yet IRS official Lois Lerner continues to invoke her 5th Amendment right against self incrimination in refusing to answer congressional questions. There can be no doubt that she has something to hide.

Adding to the list of problems confronting this president, his credibility, or lack thereof, must be considered. Promising the people that “if you like your plan you can keep it,” and “if you like your doctor you can keep him,” were clearly demonstrably false. And proclaiming to the public (together with then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton) that the Benghazi attack was the result of a reaction to a You Tube video was also false in view of information then in the administration’s hands that the attack was the result of (shhh, here’s that forbidden word) terrorists.

But it must be understood that the root of the problem is the basic flaw in American politics – anyone can run for president, qualified or not. It’s a subject I’ve written about in the past. Maybe that’s the way it should be in a free country, but on the other hand perhaps some limitations should be placed on who is qualified to run.

This president was unqualified from the gitgo, having been a community organizer at some time in his past and having less than one full term in the Senate. This does not cut it. At a minimum, experience in governance should be a must, with an established showing in leadership, at solving problems, and at compromise where necessary. Getting elected should not be a popularity contest. The bottom line here is that President Obama was never qualified to be president, was grossly inexperienced, and has proven to be incompetent. He should never have been elected in the first place and now the country is paying the price for this mistake. It should not be repeated. America should be great again, sentiments voiced by billionaire Donald J. Trump at a convention I attended in San Jose California last December. Amen to that.

The president’s focus is on increasing the size of government. This is the wrong direction for the country but the president doesn’t seem to understand. Individual liberty and free enterprise should take precedence over big government. This is what has made America great in the past and will continue to do so.

Copyright©Arnold G. Regardie. All rights reserved.


Filed under active voice, clear writing, good diction, sound sentence structure, tips for good diction, Writing Improvement

Good Letter Writing Skill Is An Essential Addition To Your Writing Repetoire

Expertise in letter writing should be an indispensable part of your writing arsenal.

It goes without saying that there are manifold uses for letters. All job seekers should use a cover letter to accompany any resume which is sent out. The cover letter should introduce you personally to the prospective interviewer. The letter should specify the position you are seeking and state how you learned about it. It should explain why you are qualified for the position and how your qualifications will benefit the company. Close the letter by requesting an interview, and state when you will be available.

A properly worded letter of inquiry about a job prospect may open a door of opportunity for you. Also, sending a thank you letter to acknowledge an interview may make a difference to the interviewer.

Business letters should be clear, to the point, and correctly punctuated and formatted. Properly written, attractive letters will reflect favorably on you individually as well as any company that employs you.

It is important to confirm all important meetings, events, telephone conversations, and decisions by letter. It’s a good idea to leave a paper trail for future reference; it will go a long way to avoid misunderstandings and is always a good business practice.

There are several guidelines to keep in mind when writing a letter.

1. The heading of the letter should be centered and provide the writer’s full name, address, and telephone number. Adding an email address and cell/mobile phone number is discretionary. But you want to make sure the addressee knows how to contact you easily.

2. The date of the letter should appear directly under the heading.

3. The addressee’s address inside the letter should be the same as the address which appears on the mailing envelope. Do not omit street or avenue.

4. Use a reference line following the address to reference an order number, invoice number, a previous letter, or any other convenient point of reference. The reference should be preceded by “RE:”

5. The greeting (or salutation, as it is sometimes called), should be separated by two spaces from the inside address or the reference line, if one is used. The inside address and the greeting should begin at the left margin. The greeting should be followed by a colon for business letters and a comma for personal letters.

Typical greetings include the following:

Dear Sir (or Madam):

Dear Mr. Jones:

Dear Mrs. Smith:

Dear Ms. Brown:

Dear IRS: (or other agency if known)

Avoid using “To Whom It May Concern, “if at all possible.

6. Begin the body of the letter one line below the greeting. Don’t use shorthand or abbreviated writing. Always write with direct, full sentences. Avoid flowery or hackneyed language such as “I beg to advise,” and all slang expressions.

Wrong: Your kind favor of (date) has been received and we hasten to inform you the order has been shipped immediately following.

Better: We have received your order dated (date). The order was filled on (date) and shipped on (date).

7. Get right to the point. If you are applying for a job, begin by stating “I am applying for,” and not “I would apply for” or “I wish to apply for.”

8. As pointed out in previous blogs, as well as in my book, “The Art of Clear Writing,” (available at books and in print), organization is essential to clear writing. This is true in letter writing as well. Group your thoughts logically. If you are applying for a job, an appropriate grouping might consist of personal qualifications, followed by experience and then references.

9. Finish the letter with a simple sentence such as:

I hope to hear from you soon, I trust this answers your letter, or

Please advise me if further information is required.

Avoid any closing that begins with a participle such as “Thanking you for your consideration of this request.” It is better to say simply, “Thank you for your consideration of this request.”

10. The closing should begin at the left margin, followed by a comma. Appropriate closings include the following:

Sincerely yours,


Yours truly,



11. Sign your name clearly and type it out four spaces directly underneath the signature using all capital letters or initial capitals. It is discretionary whether to provide a title or degree before or after the signature. A married woman may add her married name in parenthesis following her typed name. Do not follow the signature with any punctuation.

12. If you are sending a copy of the letter to someone else, add “cc [name of additional addressee]” two spaces below your typed name. Place a check mark by the “cc” on the copy being sent to designate that the addressee is getting that copy. Sending a cover letter with the copy is discretionary, depending on the circumstances.

13. If you are enclosing any document with the letter add “Encl.” following your typed name or any “cc.”

14. Miscellaneous matters. For business correspondence, only use one side of the paper; fold the letter twice horizontally in equal sections. Don’t staple or clip pages together.

Use these letter writing skills to enhance your writing credentials. Good letter writing goes hand in glove with clear writing.

Copyright © Arnold G. Regardie. All rights reserved.

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Filed under active voice, clear writing, good diction, sound sentence structure, tips for good diction, Writing Improvement