Here's a moment to ponder as the contemporary world monitors the aggressive posturing in North Korea. Army Lt. Col. Don Carlos Faith Jr. will be buried with full military honors in Arlington National Cemetery 62 years after he was killed on a North Korean battlefield. Son of an Army general and an Indiana native who also fought in World War II, the officer posthumously was awarded the Medal of Honor for his valiant actions in the bitter cold along the frozen Chosin Reservoir.
"When the enemy launched a fanatical attack against his battalion, Lt. Col. Faith unhesitatingly exposed himself to heavy enemy fire," the medal citation noted. Faith fought with his battalions for five days and personally led counterattacks until all of his command safely passed through the enemy fire.
He was mortally wounded while "firing his pistol and throwing grenades" during an attack on an enemy roadblock. The officer died Dec. 2, 1950. His remains were recovered nine years ago through a joint effort between the U.S. and Democratic People's Republic of North Korea; Faith was later identified by scientists with the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command using circumstantial evidence, dental records and a DNA comparison with a surviving brother. He was formally accounted for Oct. 11. and will be laid to rest Wednesday.
Defense Department records say 7,921 Americans are still unaccounted for from the Korean War.
BUDGET IN BRIEF
Opposing reactions from Republicans and conservatives to President Obama's 2014 budget proposal were swift. The thinking? For efficiency, some pithy phrases gleaned from just a scant few:
"President Obama's budget is a blueprint for a recession." (Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida); "Instead of investing in government, let's empower the individual." (Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina); "The president promises that more government spending will boost the economy. That is just more failed Keynesianism." (Heartland Institute Director of Research S.T. Karnick); "Is this a belated April Fool's joke?" (FreedomWorks public policy director Dean Clancy); "President Obama is holding necessary reforms hostage to more tax increases." (Sen. John Cornyn of Texas).
And from Americans for Tax Reform comes a startling overview: "There are literally dozens of new tax increases in the FY 2014 Obama budget. In total, they increase taxes by nearly $1 trillion over the next decade. They would permanently bring the federal tax burden to 20 percent of economic output, a level only reached in one year since World War II."
Bumper sticker spotted by Inside the Beltway reader Ryck Lydecker in Germantown.
Some hallowed ground will soon be the site of an aggressive anti-gun flash mob. Here's the script: Creative folk quickly will assemble near the Lincoln Memorial, pretend they've been shot, then sink "lifeless" to the sidewalk. Someone will chalk their outline on the concrete, like a crime scene. It's all been choreographed by a Broadway performer who intends to "create a visual reflection of the destruction caused by gun violence."
Or something like that.
"Artists have a responsibility to create work that elicits a response. Artists have the power to initiate empathy and introspection a first step toward changing attitudes," says Lorin Latarro, the choreographer who, well, choreographed the moves.
Tourists should be intrigued, no doubt. Maintenance folks and law enforcement, perhaps, not so much.
About 100 artists will gather at the Memorial's reflecting pool Sunday to leave a mark, the dancer explains.
"The participants will trace an outline of their bodies with chalk and write a word or statistic inside the form. The result is a visceral, expressionistic, literary reminder of countless lives lost," says Ms. Latarro, also founder of Artists Against Gun Violence, who are taking the show to six cities. Their motto: "All it costs is chalk."
A TASTE FOR REDEMPTION
Despite Anthony D. Weiner's dubious sexting scandal nearly two years ago, the former congressman from New York still has millions in campaign dollars left to spend. Mr. Weiner recently dropped $100K for a voter poll to help him determine if he should run for New York City mayor against four established candidates.
"The question is why Weiner is so eager to enter a race that seems so tough for him to win. There is the matter of the $4.3 million in the Anthony Weiner for Mayor war chest, plus about $1.5 million in public matching funds if he runs, which would make him one of the better-financed candidates in the race," an unidentified political adviser told The New York Times in a lengthy story on Mr. Weiner and his wife, Huma Abedin, published Wednesday.
"Isn't this about winning?" asks the adviser. "Or is this an attempt to get the scandal off the books? Then the next time he runs for something, he can say: 'You know what? We talked about that last time. Aren't we beyond that?' If so, it's not a crazy strategy."
POLL DU JOUR
• 85 percent of Americans approve of taxpayers doing "whatever they can within the law" to minimize their personal taxes.
• 13 percent disapprove.
• 56 percent of Americans have an unfavorable impression of the federal tax system.
• 39 percent have a favorable impression.
• 49 percent have a favorable impression of the Internal Revenue Service.
• 48 percent have an unfavorable impression of the agency.
Source: An ABC News/Washington Post poll of 1,022 U.S. adults conducted April 3 to 7.
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