Monthly Archives: March 2009

Canadians Worry About Obama Border Plans

Barack Obama has a dozen problems on his plate ranging from dealing with terrorism to the economic future of his nation, but for some reason, the president also feels the need to add new issues to the list. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano mentioned while in Canada that she had concerns about America’s border with her northern neighbor and this might result in using the same tactics to Canada that are currently used on the border with Mexico. She mused about the importance of treating all borders the same and applying the idea of fences and border patrols to the Canadian border as though somehow there is fear of immigrants pouring across and entering America as well as bringing in illegal drugs.

The idea of “border parity” makes absolutely no sense and it merely a way of creating a problem where none exists. If Napolitano is worried about “securing” America’s border with Canada, then America must be prepared to spend billions of dollars against a non-existent threat. What exactly is going on in the mind of Barack Obama? Does anyone know?

North Korea Continues Its Mysterious Ways

The ever mysterious machinations of North Korean leaders at times come across as simply a desire to keep the world confused concerning exactly what is going on up north. The Japanese newspaper, Sankei Shimbun reveals North Korea will launch a satellite into orbit with the assistance of a team of experts from Iran. American and South Korean Intelligence sources believe the North Koreans are going to launch a middle range ballistic missile. It is assumed the missile will be a veiled warning to the United Nations and anyone else that North Korean will not accept sanctions and intends to do as it pleases.

The presence of Iranian missile experts is only bound to increase tension both in the Middle East and in Asia. At some point, the world has to engage Iran in meaningful dialogue concerning the need to reduce missiles and nuclear development. All too often these days the road to peace lies through Tehran.

Kurdish Nationalism Rises In Turkey

Local elections in Turkey the past weekend revealed that Kurdish nationalism is alive and growing even stronger. The Justice and Development Party (AKP) encountered strong evidence that Kurds did not trust the stance of current Prime Minister Erdogan who they believe lied to them about his commitment to work through peaceful means in dealing with issues related to Kurds. The opposition Democratic Society Party (DTP) which has been championing Kurdish rights strongly increased their lead in Kurdish areas of the nation. In 2007, the AKP had a higher percent of the vote because Kurds accepted his pledge to work peacefully in dealing with their rights. However, he switched and backed military plans for attacking Kurdish rebels in northwestern Iraq.

The issue of Kurdish rights hangs like an albatross around the neck of Turks who seek entry into the European Union. The EU will insist on local rights for Kurds and if that is not forthcoming, they will reject Turkey’s application for membership.

Swedish Social Democrats Secret Bigots!

A radio station planted three of its people in local chapters of the Swedish Social Democrats in order to discover what they thought about immigrants. Outwardly, the Social Democrats have been championing the rights of immigrants, but reporters quickly found out the real thinking of these supposed defenders of human rights. During one-third of the meetings attended by the undercover journalists, members of the Social Democrats made racist or anti-immigrant remarks. Among the comments were statements that immigrants were not loyal to the country of Sweden, they did not want to pay taxes and they would rather take black-market jobs. “Those who come from these countries,” said one laughing Social Democrat, “they’re pretty raw and real savages…it’s in their nature.”

A member of the Swedish parliament claimed immigrants from Afghanistan had “2,000 parasites on their body. Not even our dogs have that many.” Naturally, the Swedish Democratic Party argued the comments were taken out of context and they were few in number.

Yes, it is the fault of those damn reporters for reporting what was said!!

British Teachers Seek Shorter Work Week

British teachers are seeking to change current policies and implement a new 35 hour work-week which would result in teachers interacting with students about 24 hours per week. The remaining time would allow teachers to grade papers and to plan their future lessons. In 2001, Scotland implemented the McCrone Agreement which established a 35 hour work week which has been reduced to 22.5 hours interacting with students.

Any time teachers discuss the topic of how many hours they work, the public becomes excited and angry because it is assumed teachers have an easy life. In reality, few good teachers work less than sixty hours a week given the demands to create lesson plans each day and to interact with students after school. Let me cite an example, if a teacher assigns a writing assignment to 80 students and devotes 10 minutes to making comments and grading, this constitutes 800 minutes which is over 10 hours of work.

The difference between good teachers and mediocre ones is that the former work many more hours than what people who never have taught understand.

Why Did America Defeat Taliban In 2001?

As i recall, in 2001, President Bush cited as among the reasons for invading Afghanistan, the terrible record of the Muslim fanatics toward issues of women rights. Hamid Karzai, the man we essentially installed as president of Afghanistan, signed into law a new piece of legislation which forbids women from leaving their house without the husband’s permission. It also allows a man to have sex with his wife regardless of her feelings. OOps, we are not being fair. It says if a woman is feeling bad or having one of those female moments, she can decline the husband’s desire to rape her. The new law also grants custody of children to the husband or the grandfather.

Shinkai Karokhail, like other female members of the legislature, complained the bill was pushed through rather rapidly, with limited debate and all of its provisions have not been made public. Karzai signed the bill last month, undoubtedly in his attempt to curry favor among Muslim fundamentalists. Westerners are not loudly protesting, oh well, Karzai is among the “good guys” and when he behaves like a member of the Taliban, we just excuse away his behavior as we have his corruption and incompetence.

Say, why DID we invade Afghanistan?

Iraq Wars Continue Among Iraqis

The mantra about the success of the famous “surge” has become part of what people believe is the conventional truth concerning Iraq– al-Qaeda has been beaten and things are on the mend and headed for democracy. Unfortunately, the truth is not always what it sounds like on Fox News. Sunni groups which cooperated with American forces in order to deal with al-Qaeda now fear the Iraqi Shiite government is cracking down on their groups in order to destroy Sunni power within the nation. Sunni groups began a two day protest against arrest of one of its leaders and US backed Iraqi troops crushed the Sunni attempt at protesting what they viewed as an injustice.

The Iraq government is attempting to prove that Sunni forces are trying to bring back Saddam military forces. Sunni forces wonder why charges against their leader, Adel l-Maashhadani were never raised when he was working with US troops to crush al-Qaeda. Leaders of Sunni councils are becoming angry at failure to incorporate their forces within the Iraqi army.

If American forces leave and things don’t change there is a high probability that Sunni-Shiite fighting will resume.

Militants Run Wild In Pakistan

The government of Pakistan often presents itself as a country divided in which as one group proclaims its opposition to militants, its double is joining them to attack itself. A group of gunmen, some dressed in police uniforms, attacked a police academy in Lahore and before the carnage was over there were dead police as well as several of the attackers. The attack is believed to have been planned by Pakistan Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud, a man with whom the Pakistan government a few weeks ago arranged for a truce. It is clear the goal of these attacks is to destabilize the country and compel the Pakistan army to make a decision — does it represent the nation of Pakistan or is it merely an arm of militants?

At least 70 policemen were wounded in the attack by men who were young, bearded and prepared to die for the greater glory of the Taliban. Some TV scenes showed police crouching behind walls and not actively engaged in doing any fighting. Of the eight dead gunmen, two blew themselves up after being wounded. Police did capture about six of the attackers.

Pakistan spokespeople claim a foreign hand was behind the attack and one can only deduce the foreign hand must be India. Why Muslim militants who are willing to commit suicide would be involved in an Indian planned attack is rather bewildering. There is no doubt the men were trained and if they were trained by the same group which help plan the attack on Mumbai it means the Pakistan ISI intelligence group had a hand in planning an attack on itself.

UN Secretary General: Freeze, Halt Israel Actions!

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon urged the Israel government to freeze further West Bank settlements, allow goods into Gaza and cease trying to take over east Jerusalem actions of driving out Muslims. He made clear to the new Israel government of Benjamin Netanyahu must “allow people and goods to move (into Gaza). It must freeze settlements, ease unilateral actions in Jerusalem and continue negotiations.” Ban expressed his delight that President Obama appears wiling to take an even-handed approach to the Middle East unlike George Bush who allowed Israel to do as it wished.

For the first time in its history, Israel has a peace initiative that is supported by most Arab nations. The key issues is whether Israel is prepared to return to 1967 borders in order to enter into a new era of peace. There is no doubt Israel hard liners can point to past failures. The fact peace attempts have failed does not mean they always will end in disaster. Just ask the people of Ireland who ended a struggle going back over a hundred years.

LEGALIZE DRUGS–FREE MEDICAL CARE FOR ALL!

It is now almost a hundred years since Congress passed the first federal laws which made use of drugs to be illegal. Drugs were used throughout American history and it was not uncommon for a mother to damp a rag with a bit of cocaine in order to have a restless child go to sleep. The original anti-drug laws arose because some in Congress were bigoted against the Chinese and thought the infamous “opium dens” were places that enticed nice young men and women to surrender their virtues. Of course, within a decade Congress and the nation had pushed through the famous Prohibition experiment which did more to INCREASE CRIME than any legislation in American history.

The United States now has 2.2 million people in jail– just about the most prisoners of any nation in the world. About 600,000 are in jail due to drug violations. Of course, it is rare for an upper or middle class person to wind up in jail due to a drug offense. Occasionally, a Hollywood star goes in for a few months, but how many wealthy people go to jail for drug offenses? It cost the nation about $30,000 per year to house prisoners. Do your own arithmetic about the cost of just housing those who violate the drug laws.

It is estimated the United States also spends about $50 billion a year to fight drugs. Our drug addiction has ruined nations like Mexico and fostered crime, corruption, and instability. Despite all the money spent, drug use INCREASES. President Obama responded to a question about legalizing drugs with a snotty remark about those on the Internet who want to legalize drugs. The question was the most asked and it deserved an intelligent response.

We understand, given the problems facing America today, it is not possible right at this moment to legalize drugs even though in so doing, we could wipe out drug lords, deny the Taliban huge amounts of money, and help our neighbors to the south deal with crime in their nations. It is time for the United States to BEGIN the process of developing an intelligent plan for dealing with drugs. It is time for President Obama to appoint a bipartisan committee to investigate the entire process of legalizing drugs. It should include people from all sectors of society and be allowed to outline a new program that makes sense. If the federal government assumed control for the sale of drugs–along with programs to assist those on drugs– we would have enough money to pay for national medical insurance for all!
Wake Up America! LEGALIZE DRUGS!