On January 9, 1945 my grandparents received a letter from President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The letter enclosed a Purple Heart (please see bottommost).

My mother lost her older brother James to the Battle of the Bulge; Uncle Jim never made it home from World War II. Very shortly thereafter her father, my grandfather, a New York City sanitation worker, died in grief. This left my grandmother Mary Bennett, her son, my Uncle Vincent, and my mother to fend for themselves in a three room flat in Brooklyn, New York.

After Uncle Jim was killed and my grandfather died, Mom could not complete high school, instead needing to work to pay for food and the rent. I was her first-born.

My grandmother and grandfather were legal immigrants from Ireland. They, my uncles and mother have all passed. But neither they or their siblings have whined incessantly to others about the difficulties borne during life, and they certainly never declared themselves or submitted to the demented, servile status of being “victims.” They never declared themselves de facto separate or spiritually and intellectually superior to all other members of the human family. They never asked for special treatment or consideration based on the alleged treatment of their alleged ancestors, and they certainly never demanded outrageous compensation from whomever based on that alleged treatment. I know, anticipate, and am hopeful that no such vanities and bigotries will ever afflict my family and friends.

Frequently my mother, an Irish Catholic born Kathleen Albina Bennett, would declare:

“Show me the company that you keep, and I will tell you what you are.”

In her typically lucid way she was demonstrating her cognizance of a very simple idea: If you keep the company of honest, ethical, hard working, generous caring people, this is an indication of who and what you are.

In contrast, if you coddle or hang around with lowlifes, liars, scumbags, incestuous dirtbags, murderers, traitors, greedy pigs, self-serving charlatans, thieves, ignoramuses, duplicitous soulless maggots, adulterous fornicating filth, and other assorted parasitic satanic inbred whackos; then it is unlikely that you are providing beacons of hope, well-being, love and peace. In this associative scenario it is highly unlikely that You are the light of the world, or abide in a Shining city upon a hill.

So I have been thinking about Mom s declaration/admonition relative to today s so-called Western Civilization in general, and the United States in particular. I have been pondering the company that we keep.

Although the list below is greatly abridged it exposes for all, especially Americans, who and what comprise the company that we keep. The names/items are in no particular order. For many I have inserted hyperlinks (blued/underlined) to provide relevant and (apparently) representative discussion. As such, I will let the reader decide what we are.

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Larry Silverstein (1) (2)

American Airlines

Binyamin Netanyahu (1) (2) (3)

Norman Podhoretz

The Federal Reserve (1) (2)

Rita Katz (SITE) (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6)

Jonathan Jay Pollard

Daniel Ayalon

Cass R. Sunstein (1) (2)

Joel D. Pedersen

Yitzhak Shamir

Wikipedia

Lady Gaga

Abraham H. Foxman

Mark Regev

Yitzhak Shamir

Congressional Human Rights Caucus (1) (2) (3)

Representative Tom Lantos of California

Senator John Edwards

Jerome Hauer

Judith Miller

Charles Krauthammer

“Adam Yahiye Gadahn”

Hollywood

Golda Meir

James A. Henderson Jr.

Alvin K. Hellerstein

Ehud Olmert

Richard Cheney

George Soros

Eleanor Clift

Bill O Reilly

Chief Justice John Roberts

Associate Justice Elena Kagan (1) (2) (3)

Mayor Michael Bloomberg (1) (2)

Barbara Lerner Spectre (1) (2) (3) (4)

Bernard Madoff

Jamie Gorelick

Michael Chertoff

Benjamin Chertoff (1) (2) (3)

James Meigs

Google

Albert Einstein

Ariel Sharon

Donald H. Rumsfeld

Elad Yoran

Al Gore (1) (2)

Dov Zakheim

Christine Todd Whitman

Paul Wolfowitz

Jonathan Kay (National Post)

Richard Perle

Robert Mueller

Gabriel Schoenfeld

Matthew Drudge

Professor Martin Van Crevel

Hillary Clinton

Judd Greg (1) (2)

Meir Dagan

Douglas Feith

John Ashcroft

Josh Fattal

Philip D. Zelikow (1) (2) (3)

Susan Ginsburg (1) (2)

William Bill Kristol

Ben Shalom Bernanke (1) (2)

Alan Greenspan

Woodrow Wilson

Robert Reich

Timothy Geithner

David Ben Guron (1) (2)

Arthur James Balfour

Mayer Amschel Bauer (Rothschild)

Theodor Herzl (1) (2) (3)

Brian Kilmeade

Chaim Weizmann

Nahum Sokolow

Michael Mukasey (1) (2)

Vincent Bugliosi, Esq.

Paula Zahn

Julia Gillard

Carl Rove

Vladimir Ilyich Lenin

Jakob Heinrich Schiff

Ari Fleischer

Ann Coulter

Senator John Kerry

Marc Grossman

James Hansen (1) (2)

Wolf Blitzer

Henry Alfred Kissinger (1) (2) (3) (4)

L. L. Lemnitzer

Richard Meyers

Ari Ben-Menashe

Elliott Abrams

Josef Fritzl

Josh Fryedenberg

Jon Faine

Amy Goodman

Rabbi Yitzchak Ginsburgh of Chabad

Congressman Anthony Weiner

Lewis “Scooter” Libby

Jack Abramoff

Rahm Emanuel

Jeb Bush

Avram Noam Chomsky

Alexander Cockburn

Marvin Bush

Daniel Lewin

Paul F. Mlakar

Davin Coburn (1) (2) (3)

Maurice R. Greenberg

Jules Kroll

George Tenet

John Bolten

Alan M. Dershowitz (1) (2)

Eliot Spitzer (1) (2) (3)

John Gross (NIST)

Shyam Sunder (NIST)

Menachem Begin

Eric Holder

Gene Corley (MIT)

Michael G. Cherkasky

Kenneth Adelman

Robert Satloff

Stephen Michael Cohen

Simon Wiesenthal

Mark Weitzman

Marc Grossman

Madeleine Albright

Joshua Bolten

Alan Harry Goodman

Congresswoman Jane Harman

Senator Carl Levin (1) (2) (3)

Congressman Dan Lungren

Jay Lefkowitz

George H. W. Bush

Brad Blakeman

Janet Reno

Ken Melman

Daniel C. Kurtzer

John’sS. McCain, Sr.

John’sS. McCain III (1) (2)

Lincoln P. Bloomfield, Jr.

Senator Joe Lieberman

Eliot Cohen

Adam Goldman

Daniel Kurtzer

George H. Bush

The commissioners of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (1) (2)

Oded Ellner

Omer Marmari

Paul Kurzberg

Sivan Kurzberg

Yaron Shmuel

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Again, the above list is greatly abridged for the sake of space and readability. As such I am not stating any conclusions.

The reader will note that many names above are linked to sites that provide interesting, relevant and representative discussion. If I have failed in these regards I would be happy to receive input in the Comments section below, and would be happy to add to or replace the links above with your better suggestions, as well as adding your suggestions of links for those names that currently lack hyperlinks.

I would also welcome suggestions for additional names that I have overlooked, in terms of assisting our ongoing assessment of “the company that we keep” and therefore what we are or what we have become; a proverbial look-in-the-mirror . . .

The author pictured with original copies of the Purple Heart medal and President Franklin D. Roosevelt letter of January 9, 1945 which annouced the World War II death of Private First Class James P. Bennett.

By way of example, I am confident that Uncle Jim would not have kept the company of Prescott Bush, Jakob Schiff, et al.

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