Vassar Bushmills

Ok, now come kick the tires at

We invite every veteran and child of a veteran to come visit and rummage through old letters and stored emails and photos and bring us some of the stories you recall from your tours, daddy or granddaddy’s, or from all those mothers, wives and sweethearts “who also served” by watching and waiting.

This will not be a political blog, but one cannot help but notice from recent events that the principal way in which the “love America” part of our culture is passed these days is through our connection to the military. It may be the only place left in America where the values of America are passed on institutionally.

Families of veterans are vastly outnumbered by the machine-like size of an education system hell-bent on destroying our ability to pass on naturally, from parent-to-child, to grandchildren, just what it means to be an American. So we will speak a lot about the “Passing On” aspect of that long line of military men and women in our histories, at Veterans Tales.

It’s one of several “Themes” Nessa and I are discussing, to create special sections at the site.

Another “theme” -, see just below Allen’s art of a Doughboy writing home from a bunker in France, you’ll see his BEER TENT, which is another, a place where vets can tell more ribald stories, as well as melancholy ones. Many beer tents end up being confessionals.

We’re also considering a “Famous Common People” section, as that is what jump started this idea in the first place, and while I can’t speak to veterans’ face-to-face encounters with villagers in the Middle East, I can guess they got the same mixed reviews as troops in SE Asia, who had every ugly name in the world for them, yet married thousands there and brought them home. And ex-Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell, Navy Cross and Purple Heart recipient, can tell you of the courage some villages in Afghanistan showed against the Taliban while saving his life.

Again, it’s that special connection between common ordinary military members and the people on the ground that make up the heart and soul of the America we want to see beating stronger and stronger.

Also, note the drop-down called “SECTIONS”, where, when posting you can tick off where you want your story to appear, by era (WWII, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan and others), and branch of service. Our screeners will review them before approving the submission for publication.

You don’t have to be great writers, you don’t even have to spel good, you just have to have a story you’re itchin’ to tell, and then find out who wants to share in that story. Navy guys are even allowed to start out their tale with “Now this ain’t no  s**t”, like they always did in my generation.

Signing up is easy, Commenting is easy, and note the DONORS page. Early donors will all be listed as Founders, regardless of the amount. We are applying for 501c3 status, will not have paid sponsors, but will host a page for sponsors, sort of like ads in a school yearbook. We will live entirely by donations. (The size of Founders’ gifts will not be disclosed, whether $5 or $500.

If you have any questions, just CONTACT us.


Disneyland Silences Ret. Marine’s Voice for Recording at Flag Retreat Ceremony

How low will Disneyland continue to sink? Is Disneyland at war with American workers and our values?

For the past several years, Disneyland more concerned with profits has been working overtime to decimate its American workforce by replacing its IT staff with foreigners entering the USA under the  H-1B visa program.  Laid off American IT employees who were forced to train their replacements lost the first round of a lawsuit in court when a judge ruled that Disneyland did not conspire against their American employees. The battle in court continues.

Is Disneyland at war with American workers, our veterans and our values?

In the name of progress, Disneyland last month silenced the voice of Retired Marine Corps Sgt. Ernie “Gunny” Napper, member of Disneyland Resort Security who after the lowering of the flag during the park’s  daily Flag Retreat Ceremony thanked our veterans for their service with a recording of the 68 year old Marine’s expression of gratitude to the men and women who served in the U. S. Military, “To all who stand here today and have served our nation, on behalf of Disney Resorts and our grateful nation, thank you for your faithful service to America.

Fox News

 Disneyland told Fox News that Napper still “regularly” takes part in the ceremony, along with two dozen other “cast members.” The resort made the change “to provide a more consistent guest experience, and more important, to ensure all guests can hear the remarks.”

A Disneyland spokesman continued, “We understand that he has personally told his leader that he thinks it is better now that everyone can hear what is being said.”


Pure spin from Disneyland’s public relations.

Still, Napper himself told the newspaper: “A recording doesn’t speak with passion from the heart.”

Other visitors said they weren’t happy….

“They’re sterilizing a very personal, powerful part of that ceremony where Gunny connects with the veterans,” Susan Emslie told the paper. She is a self-proclaimed first-generation Disney kid who was in the park the first week it opened in 1955.

“It breaks his heart to know he has to stand there silent now,” she said, referring to Napper.  

“Progress is great, but sometimes sad when traditions are changed — Gunny Ernie Napper was one sharp dude, but he’s a Marine and Marines are totally sharp,” California military vet Gary Washburn wrote on Facebook Saturday[…]

Disneyland is on the wrong side of history.

Like so many others opting for political correctness and inclusivity, Disneyland is on the wrong side of history.

Ret. Marine Corps Sgt. Ernie “Gunny” Napper holds a special place in his heart for WWII veterans*

Mr. Napper, served his country, twenty-one years as gunnery sergeant from Vietnam to the Gulf War. He started working with Disneyland, Anaheim, California in 1992; it is then that thanks to Mr. Napper, who conducts the Saturday Flag Retreats, his acknowledgement and expression of gratitude to our veterans for their service and sacrifice that the ceremony became a crowd draw to Disneyland. (See: “I Support the Disneyland Flag Retreat Ceremony”-Facebook page link here.)

OC Weekly

…On busy Saturdays, it attracts passersby and garners a crowd of 30 or 40 people…in the shaded benches that circle the flagpole, sits a group of veterans and military families less invested in the Mouse’s pomp and circumstance than in the community the ceremony has unintentionally created thanks to park security guard Ernie Napper.

Though the ceremony starts around 4:30 p.m., the group begins arriving several hours earlier, catching up over Frappuccinos from the Disneyland Starbucks and staking out spaces on the benches for the regulars who trickle in. The attendees include Charlie Carmack, a 90-year-old World War II veteran from Livingston, Tennessee, who served for three years in the Navy, weathering typhoons and Zeros aboard the famed aircraft carrier USS Essex CV-9. And Don, a Vietnam War vet who can name the make, model and destination of the military planes that pass[…]

Read full article

As it is with heroes, the threat of rain does not deter them from the task set before them.

As you can see in the videos above along with the many circulating on the internet, Mr. Napper has become a celebrity of sorts at Disneyland  adding a special touch to to their flag retiring ceremony that draws in veterans and their families like bees to honey (no pun intended).

A recorded message is cold, dismissive, lacks that personal touch and sensitivity toward Disneyland’s visitors, in particular our veterans, their families while sending the message that all including Mr. Napper are now considered irrelevant, as ordained by an entity once referred to as “The Happiest Place On Earth.”

Disneyland having sold out Americans and our nation’s values has lost its halo.  Don’t believe me? See Business Insider’s 2017 article “Anaheim isn’t ‘The Happiest Place on Earth’ “, better yet google, “Disneyland is no longer the happiest place on earth.”

It certainly does appear that Disneyland’s lack of American values, respect for Americans and for the sake of profits and political correctness opting instead for a voice recorder, an illegal alien workforce, community and the crime factor as a result will before long seal Disneyland’s fate.

How say you?



*Image source:  I Support the Disneyland Flag Retreat Ceremony (Facebook page)



ANNOUNCING: Veteran’s Tales, a website for Veteran’s by Veterans

Vassar Bushmills

I’m extra pleased to announce the launching of a new website, by veteran’s for veterans, called “Veteran’s’ Tales”. I’ve been fortunate to join with Allen Ness, US Army Paratrooper, Master Sergeant, Retired, and Dave Poff, aka Haystack from fame, to form a new 501 (3) c website, “Veterans’ Tales”.

I’m really excited about this program because it seems veterans have no place where they can go and share stories with their mates. And the world.

A lot of lost history there, and we mean to restore as much as we can, including letters and photos from family albums going back as far those family histories will provide, including extracting some poignant letters and stories from known works, such as Ernie Pyle, and Bill Mauldin.

I think this is a site of first instance.

***The basic premise will be based on military members’ encounters with people in surrounding communities, both in the US and abroad. As you know veterans have keener eyes and sensibilities about ordinary people, and it’s long been a goal of mine to restore that connection, which I began with my “Famous Common People I have Known” essays.

It was my short Lent Season story, here, about my Jeepney driver, Benny, in the Philippines in 1974 that caused some veterans to contact me and suggest this site.

But I also expect there will be other more sober and cathartic tales, as well; stories military members have kept buried for years. As a legal officer in the Far East during the Vietnam War I spent countless hours counseling with soldiers, from E-3 to Captain, about more sobering tales from Vietnam, Japan and Korea.

***The site is under construction,, and we need to raise money to carry us through the start-up, about 6 months, at which time we hope to have several thousand regular viewers. Right now our people are working without pay, but we plan to carry three (3) salaried positions.

A dedicated Donor site will be set up within the week. Every donor will be highlighted on a separate Sponsor page, but all the donors in this start-up phase will be specially recognized as Founders, regardless of the size of their donation.

***Most importantly, please pass this note onto to your friends, especially veterans and any local organizations you know who support veterans. We would like to establish some collaborations with them. And if you have stories, just from around the dinner table, I encourage you to share them.

I’ll post an update once the site is fully functional.

It will be easy to register, and write a Tale, as well as Recommend others’ Tales, and to comment, be part of the conversation. We will have moderators keeping the trolls outside the gate. Rules of conduct will also apply.

Since military members often call a spade a fritizing shovel, language will not be one of them, except for 2-3 words. But this will not be a political site, except where love of country is involved. I can think of all sorts of 4-letter words that will be allowed before mean and vicious language.

But moderators will be standing by just in case.

Thanks again.

Vassar Bushmills


Trump Designs New Model for Being the Boss

Vassar Bushmills

Trump Pays for Lavish Christmas Feast for Police and Military Who Protect Him. The Left will mock him, call him a garish show-off, but it will be a generation at least before the next Barack Obama will spend millions of our dollars to vacation his family around the world. Hell, who knows, maybe even Sheila Jackson Lee will have to fly coach.

Trump’s put the reciprocity back into being a boss, the nobility back onto charity, and the gratitude back into public service, even as he knowingly allows his personal wealth and brand to be dissipated by at least a third, by doing what the Democrats have always squalled about, “giving something back” (before leaving office as multi-millionaires).

Through example only, Donald  Trump will be the new model for at least a generation, and many aspiring public office-seekers knowing there isn’t any low-hanging fruit to pick or innocent citizens to kick out of 1st Class anymore, won’t even bother to apply,

Not only government, but modern corporate managers and aspiring MBA candidates will be wise to take heed, the days of privileged distance from the help are about to end.