Monthly Archives: January 2009

Saudi Police Smash Vice Ring To Save Democracy!

America and the world’s democracies are very fortunate to have an ally such as Saudi Arabia whose forces are ever on guard to protect the people of that happy land from having to encounter such evil events as men and women walking and talking together. Yesterday, members of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice (Hay) smashed a ring of sex mad men and women who were attending a fair organized by British universities to help Saudi youth select a college. The police entered college grounds posing as representatives of a government body and made women leave the premises to avoid having them come into contact with the body of an evil man– male relatives, by definition, are not evil.

Not only were Saudi women made to leave but so were British women. The British women were serving as representatives of the 25 colleges which advertised their institutions since it made common sense to have women serve Saudi women. But, in the glorious democracy of Saudi Arabia even having women serve women is illegal if a man is within seeing distance.

Is the fact Saudi Arabia has oil the reason the world puts up with their nonsense?

Death Of Newspapers On Horizon?

As a young boy growing up in the 1930s and 1940s, I had a daily selection from among twelve newspapers ranging from the Communist Daily Worker on the left to the right wing Daily Mirror. There was no need to have a computer access these periodicals, one simply hung around the newstand and read whatever one desired. However, recent news indicates the United States is witnessing the death of a large segment of its newspapers. The Gannett news chain has given all employees a week of unpaid vacation in order to save money. Circulation is down even at the New York Times, and hundreds will shortly be dismissed. Once upon a time important newspapers maintained reporters on a permanent basis in cities throughout the world, but today such events are handled by CNN or a few other outlets.

The New York Times website has announced in December its online newspaper received 18.2 million hits which was a rise of six percent and other key newspapers like USA Today and the Wall Street Journal had similar experiences. Total visits to the top ten newspapers was 252 million, a rise of 34% over previous years.

Nielsen Online figures indicate the average web surfer spends about a minute on a page. To read an excellent columnist requires time and thinking. We are entering the world of non-thinkers and short term readers. Will that world produce a better educated population?

Life In The Fantasy Of Mugabeland!

There is a land far away in which a wondrous Prince St. Bobby rules as only gallant prince can in a world in which there is poverty and hunger. At night, the brave Prince St. Bobby, gathers children around the fire and recounts tales of his bravery against the hated “colonists” and when children ask for food, he smiles, and announces he has something better to offer– more tales of his brave exploits in the wars against the bad, bad colonialists. Of course, there are always evil enemies who linger in the dark and help the bad colonists, but brave St. Bobby is not afraid. In times of darkness he sends his wife, the beautiful princess, on shopping trips in order to bring light into the darkness of Mugabeland which is surrounded by evil goblins and ghosts.

St. Bobby has a rival, the evil Morgan T., who demands that St. Bobby allow evil people to have power such as deciding who is in the police, but St. Bobby knows evil Morgan T. wants those who are starving to get jobs and bread. St. Bobby loves his people and if he allowed them to have bread and jobs they would become lazy and gain weight. He so wants people to be thin and lean so they will be healthy in poverty and become fast runners to win races in the Olympics.

Now, the evil and crafty enemies of St. Bobby spread tales that he only rewards his friends and allies, but the people of Mugabeland know it is better for them that all evil colonialists are gone along with their productive farms and jobs. Mugabeland people are much happier because who needs bread and hospitals if it means the friends of St. Bobby could not run farms into the ground?

There are legends spreading through Mugabeland that the evil Morgan T. wants to have is people in charge of the police and army. St. Bobby has tried over and over again to explain that power sharing means I have the power and Morgan T. shares in knowing that I have the power. Undoubtedly, evil Morgan T’s mind has been captured by the evil witches of England who spend their evenings casting spells over those who do not adore St. Bobby.

I have heard it told that St. Bobby wanders the fields of Mugabeland at night sighing over each dead body that has been killed by the evil colonialists. On some nights his friend, Count Thabo, from neighboring Mbekiland sits around the campfire where both share exploits from their brave days fighting the evil English demons. The people of Mugabeland sleep peacefully each night, in fact, so peacefully, they probably never will awake. Thank God for St. Bobby whose only goal is to make Mugabeland a place in which all the people have gone except for soldiers, and police, and the court of St. Bobby.

Ethiopian Troops Leave Somalia-Another Bush Fiasco!

Two years ago, President Bush urged the Christian Ethiopian government to invade Muslim Somalia because the American president did not believe Islamic fanatics should be allowed to rule. In the Bush version of “democracy,” the man from Texas decides who is the right believer in “democracy” and who is not. The last departing Ethiopian troops are abandoning their bases and headed home after two years of more chaos and destruction in Somalia. The Somalian government has reached an agreement with the main opposition, the Alliance for the Re-Liberation of Somalia. The two sides are meeting to finalize arrangements for power sharing.

Two years have passed during which hundreds of thousands of Somalians were displaced or killed or brutalized by one group or another. Any sensible person would have known in 2006, urging a Christian nation to invade a Muslim one was an invitation to disaster. But, to George Bush, “disaster” is his middle name.

Obama And The Middle East-Anything New?

Barack Obama inherited what might generously be considered to be a “mess” in dealing with conflicts within the Middle East. In an interview with al-Arabiya, the Saudi based rival to al-Jazeera, President Obama insisted his nation was not an enemy of the Muslim people and he promised to adhere to a “language of respect” in dealing with issues of concern to the Muslim people. He admitted mistakes had been made but did not delve into how Bush had fouled up the situation in the region. Many viewers were disappointed that he once again reaffirmed his nation’s support of Israel, but made no mention of the invasion of Gaza and the death of hundreds of civilians.

It is time for an American president to state openly and honestly that his nation has committed mistakes in the Middle East, and that peace between Israel and Palestinians requires concessions on the part of both parties. He must, at some point, tell the people of Israel they can not remain on the West Bank, but must return it to the Palestinian people and Israel must agree that east Jerusalem is the capital of the new Palestinian state. In return, Obama must make clear to Palestinians they can not lob rockets into Israel, and they must recognize its existence and end all forms of discrimination against Israel.

Jimmy Carter Makes Sense On Israel-Palestinian Conflict

I know many Jews who regard former president Jimmy Carter as an enemy of Israel and insist that George Bush has done more for Jews than any prior president. Carter has been appearing on several talk shows such as Jon Stewart and Larry King in order to hype his new book: ‘Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid.” His message is simple, but right on target. If Israel continues its present policies at some point it will be faced with the demographic nightmare that a one Israel solution eventually will result in a majority of the population being Muslim. Is it possible to have a “Jewish state” in which a majority are of the Muslim faith? Anyone familiar with Israeli politics knows it is virtually impossible to get Jews to agree on a single candidate, let alone a single program. The result would be Arab bloc voting, Arabs taking over the government, and then civil war and conflict.

Jimmy Carter’s solution is rather simple. Israel returns to the 1967 border although he believes it would be possible to arrange some modifications of borders by a swap of land. Arab nations would have to recognize Israel and trade and commerce could flourish between the nations. Carter argues there could be a financial arrangement to deal with the refugee problem. Carter also suggests a corridor– under supervision of the IDF– that would link Gaza with other Palestinians.

Jimmy Carter, unlike George Bush who brought violence and terrorism to the Middle East, is the ONLY AMERICAN PRESIDENT WHO EVER NEGOTIATED PEACE BETWEEN ISRAEL AND AN ARAB NATION. He helped negotiate a cease fire between Hamas and Israel last June, but Israel refused to end its blockade of goods going into Gaza and the rest is history.

For some reason, many Jews intensely dislike Jimmy Carter despite his accomplishments in aiding peace for Israel. I have heard cries that he wants to destroy Israel. Nothing in his actions nor in his words are directed towards any other end than peace for Israel. One may disagree with his suggestions, but to term Carter an enemy of Israel is a view without any foundation in reality.

Hopefully, some day, future Israelis will remember this brave and decent man with the respect he is due.

Army Recruiter Suicides Raise Alarm

Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have daily body figures as to how many members of the military were killed or wounded in action, but there is another count of thousands who manifest the wounds of serving in combat. Between 2001– 2008, seventeen Army recruiters committed suicide while attempting to fulfill their responsibilities in getting more civilians to join the armed forces. Most of the seventeen had served in combat positions which suggests they had the mental toughness to confront combat, but something created even more stress while they worked as recruiters. Army Secretary Pete Geren ordered an investigation of the suicides and has now decided to close down all recruiting efforts on February 13 in order to discuss with recruiters their mental health and review procedures.

General Del Turner studied the situation over the past few months and concluded there “are some things that are disturbing” including a poor command structure and low morale due to demands for ever increasing higher rates of success. He also found examples of recruiters being pressured by their superiors to lie about conditions.

Ironically, the economic collapse has solved the problem since now recruiters have too many applicants to serve.

Release Iraq Papers Says British Tribunal!

Nearly six years have passed since the decision by George Bush, and his friend, Ton Blair, to launch an invasion of Iraq. Bush has since offered various versions as to the reasons for invading from the once dominant WMD argument to the subsequent desire to bring democracy to the people of Iraq. But, no one has ever read what was said at Cabinet meetings in the United States or Great Britain. The Information Tribunal of the UK, has ordered that all documents related to the decision must be released to the public. “We have decided that the public interest in maintaining the confidentiality of the formal minutes of two Cabinet meetings at which ministers decided to commit forces to military action in Iraq did not… outweigh the public interest in disclosure.” The Tribunal admitted its decision was difficult, and not unanimous, but the truth had to be revealed.

The UK is now confronting the horror of what was perpetrated on the people of England and the United States. The Tribunal will delete from the information provided the public anything that might impair relations with other nations. British soldiers have died and the Tribunal believed it was time the reason for placing them in harm’s way was known to the nation.

The United States confronts a terrible economic crisis, but this can not be an excuse to prevent the American people from knowing what George Bush and his Cabinet said in deciding to send 4,000 Americans to their deaths.

Sex In Sweden–Does It Make Sense?

Sweden is among the most progressive nations in the world, but its sex laws sometimes make one wonder as to who is in charge of the country. In January, 1999, the Swedish government decided that it was a criminal act to solicit someone for sex, but it was perfectly legal to offer sex for sale. In theory, the idea was to protect women who had been caught in human trafficking, but the reality is that prostitution goes on and on since it can be a mite difficult to ascertain exactly who initiated the sexual offer. To compound the madness, the Malmo council has announced it was distributing free condoms to men who engaged in sex with a protstitute.

Let’s see. It is illegal to offer money to a woman in order to have sex, but the Malmo council will provide free condoms to men engaged in an act that is criminal. OK, there is a bit of logic in this, but to a normal mind, it is difficult to ascertain.

Blame It On The Bush Man!

The administration of George Bush was marked by such incompetence that it is rather easy to blame just about every problem on planet earth at the doorstep of the bumbler from Texas. Russian Prime Minister Vladmir Putin charges it was Bush who is responsible for the current crisis over supplies of gas and his nation’s dispute with the Ukraine. He believes the Bush administration created tension in the region by pushing for construction of missile bases in Poland and the Czech Republic. Reports that Obama has no commitment to the Bush plan have led Putin to be “cautiously optimistic” concerning establishing positive relations with the United States.

The Russian government is still angry at attempts to push NATO eastward and include the Ukraine in the organization. Putin regards such efforts as deliberately provocative and this is a major factor in creating tension in the region. Talks between Russia and the Ukraine over gas broke down in December.

Step one for President Obama is to end any further efforts to construct missile bases. Step two is sitting down with Putin and dealing with a variety of issues including the gas dispute with the Ukraine.