Category Archives: Africa

“Too Much ABCD”

I am a citizen of the United States of America, you know, the land in which those with wealth decide who becomes president, the land in which it is perfectly OK in the eyes of half the population for a person to be denied health care due to lack of money. I live in a land in which one has the right to whip out a gun and shoot someone who gave an evil look to me that I regarded as “threatening.” So, it ill behooves me to make fun of those with strange customs concerning treatment of young girls. Maimuna Abdullah was married off by her parents for a couple of hundred dollars and sent to become the wife of Mahammandu Saidu, a person who never completed elementary school, and does not like to be around those who have education. OK, so he did promise his fourteen year old bride that she could go to school, but that was before he realized the problem of being married to a literate wife. After all, most of his friends did not have wives who could read or write or do simple math, so why should his wife be anything different?

He proceed to beat the hell out of her, broke her jaw, whipped her skin, and generally made life a hell. What was her problem? She had, “too much ABCD, too much ABCD.” He did not like being around a woman who “was educated and looking down on me.” She ran away, and dad beat the hell out of her and said return to your husband. Such was her plight as it is for a high percent of young girls in Nigeria. They are compelled to give up the idea of learning math, but above all, no more learning their ABCD!

Kick Or Pray

The 2014 World Cup has finally drawn to a conclusion which means that about one billion people can get back to the ordinary hum drum of daily life. Writing as an American who simply does not share the fervor that is so often demonstrated in nations that regard who wins the World Cup as among the most important issues in their lives. I appreciate the sport fanatic since I am one. Alas, not for soccer or World Cups, but for my beloved New York Giant football team or my long lasting love affair with the New York Yankees, and my tormented suffering with the New York Knick basketball team. So, I was intrigued by a study conducted in Saudi Arabia by Marian Dujain al-Kadi which reveals that 60% of Saudi females decide which team to root for in the World Cup based on the good or bad looks of players. Of course, in Muslim Saudi Arabia not only are women banned from driving a car, they don’t even have time in school for physical education. One is left wondering do Saudi women have extra energy and are dying to bang away at a football more than even banging away with a man?

The other aspect of the World Cup in Saudi Arabia that captures my attention is what happens if the game conflicts with prayer time. Sheik Mohamed al-Mahmoud insists that prayer takes precedence over the game. “When it is time for late evening and Ramadan-specific night prayers, one must go to the mosque and pray.” These are definitely not the words or advice of a sport fan. On Yom Kippur I would flee from the synagogue to find some friendly Christian family listening to the World Series. Since they recognized while I was not Jewish, I was a devout Yankee fan, they allowed me to listen.

I hate to inform the Sheik, but God is a fanatic sport fan. And, he is really upset that Saudi women cannot kick a ball!

Unpolitical Obama

Each passing day reveals increaded evidence that Barak Obama has never grasped the importance of why a successful American president must be the political leader of his party as well as its intellectural head. Upon his election in 2008 as president of the nation, Obama has the enthusiastic support of millions of young people who wanted, not merely the end of a disastrous war in Iraq, but birth of a new era in which America was a shining light to the world. As of this date, Obama has never assumed the mantle of champion of our youth. He has ignored their issues, gone agaisnt their desire for an end to secrecy whose only goal was to intrude upon the lives of Americans. He never grasped that youth were the leading users of the Internet, and thus thos ewho would be most impacted by spying. Those of us over age 70 are not spending our lives on cell phone, Facebook or the Internet. By allowing the NSA, the FBI, the CIA to intrude into our lives, Obama has alientated America’s youth. In effecct, his failure to focus on their needs resulted in their drift away from politics.

What can a youth centered Obam do?

1. A dramatic bailout of Student Debt.

2. Reduce interest rates for Studen Loans to 3%. About wha the US spends on its loans.

3. Offer 2 year Public Service positions in exchange for end of Student Loans.

Basically, do something that makes youth want to become politically engaged because Politics directly impacts their lives.

NOBODY ASKED ME BUT

We offer observations on the human condition from a 23 year old mind trapped in an 83 year old body.

NOBODY ASKED ME BUT

There are steps to war, are there for peace?

I have weekly dream of lottery riches.

Problem of revenge is to attain it is to feel bad.

I am a man of few moods.

Who knows what lurks in the mind of Barack Obama?

I have never known the fear of intense hatred.

Allow hatred to be a weekend guest in your heart, then watch it depart.

For many, the Devil is a long lost relative.

A person can never fool self.

I wonder how people who love God seek to kill His creatures.

Another Noah’s Ark movies, I think this is a rerun.

I so miss the joy of hitch hiking.

Flashing lights in distance slow down all cars.

Tender be your love for loved ones.

Be fearless in the fight to love another.

Older daughter gently aids younger one. So sweet.

I miss the cutting intelligence of JFK.

HEADLINES FROM WORLD PRESS

We offer samples of headlines that appeared in the world press along with our comments.

USA, NY DailY News: “Professor Strips For Students”

Hopefully, the mind, not the body.

Denmark, Copenhagen Post: “Nightmare Nanny”

Nags, nags, nags.

Italy, Local: “Pope Does Not Pray For Victory”

Honest, not over the Devil?

Australia, Sydney Morning Herald: “Why Relaxing Is Difficult?”

I live in America where Republicans control Congress.

Russia, Moscow Times: “Amazon Fights Amazon”

This is one big story!

France, Connexion: “Smoking Ban In Park”

I have a hunch the winds will handle this problem.

UK, Guardian: “New Twist On Shopping”

Keep the cart free of merchandise?

On National Debt

These days every conversation I have with a member of the Republican party entails their complaints about the National Debt. In their view, this monstrosity is the creation of the Democratic Party and its spendthrift approach to government. In their version of history, under Republican presidents our government was led by those who possessed sound fiscal thinking. It was very simple according to Republicans, lower taxes on the wealthy would result in job creation leading to more tax revenues into the government and the result would be the end of our National Debt and a balanced budget. Such is the Republican mantra.

Let’s Examine the Record:

Democrat President Jimmie Carter left a National Debt of $900 Billion.
Republican President Ronald Reagan inherited this $900 Billion. He left office with a
National Debt of $2.5 TRILLION.
George H.W. Bush inherited $2.5 Trillion and left office with a National Debt of $5 TRILLION
Democrat Bill Clinton inherited $5 Trillion and left office with a National Debt of $5 Trillion. However, he left office with a budget that showed a $400 billion surplus. If following presidents did what he did, the National Debt would have BEEN PAID OFF BY 2010!
George Bush inherited $5 Trillion and left office with a National Debt of $11 TRILLION. BUT, he wrote the budget for 2009 and it had a deficit of $1 Trillion.
Barack Obama inherited a $12 Trillion deficit and due to interest payments and a collapsed economy, the National Debt continued to rise to its current $12 Trillion.

So, which party is responsible for the National Debt?

HEADLINES FROM WORLD PRESS

We offer samples of headlines that appeared in the world press along with our comments.

Russia, Moscow Times: “Prison Guards Get Lounge Chairs”

To relax after beating the hell out of prisoners, I assume.

Norway, Norway Post: “Helicopter Pilot Gives Girl Lift To Beach”

How about a lift to the waves for the helicopter?

Sweden, Local: “Swedish Teachers Feel Not Valued”

By students or parents is the question?

New Zealand, New Zealand Herald: “Boy Wins Battle For Log House”

Congratulations, Daniel Boone.

Denmark, Copenhagen Post: “God Goes To A Festival”

Leave it to we humans to use this as one more excuse for murder.

USA, aol: “Surely Common Sense”

If you cut taxes and less money comes to the government, your deficit rises.

Turkey, Hurriyet: “Man Kills Wife In Broad Daylight”

That’s what happens when a woman goes out without a hijab?

NOBODY ASKED ME BUT

We offer observations on the human condition from a 23 year old mind trapped in an 83 year old body.

NOBODY ASKED ME BUT

Black goes nicely with pink.

If I dwell in the House of the Lord, what is the monthly rent?

Mom has blond hair with dark streaks as does daughter.

One wondrous moment when child serves mom.

Is chubby mom the future for daughter?

There are unlimited chances in life, so take one.

Some dwell too often on past slights.

Tall boys place hands in pockets to appear taller.

White haired woman dressed in white is a fetching sight.

This is not a good time to be elderly and poor in America.

A lottery for many is the most important dream of life.

Some waddle to death.

We elderly await the dawn and hope for another one.

Why must front and back of human body be covered but not the face?

Mystery of life: shoe lying in middle of road.

There are mysteries that will always remain a mystery.

I have always wanted to work in a supermarket.

Are We Americans Racist?

Attorney General Eric Holder when assuming office back in 2009 made some comments that continue to infuriate members of the Republican party. He was commenting on attacks made on the new president. He said that “in things racial we always and continue to be in many ways, essentially a nation of cowards.” He was recently asked if this view continues to be held by him. Holder responded, “there’s a certain racial component to this for some people. I don’t think this is the thing that is a main driver, but for some there is a racial animus.” There is no doubt that racism continues to dwell in the hearts and minds of all too many Americans. But,the question as to whether or not Barack Obama has fostered these ideas is another question? Could he have handled the racial aspect of assuming the presidency in other ways than how he performed? In defense of Obama, there is no question whatever and how ever he handled anything as president, X number of Americans would have responded with hate and venom toward him. They would have accused him of not being a “real American.” Certainly, that has been the main focus of Fox News. Their commentators continue to raise the issue of “patriotism” and his alleged hatred of the US Constitution.

However, there is no doubt in my mind, regardless of which Democrat became president in 2008, a similar response would have emerged. Republicans of the 21st century are filled with incredible anger and hatred toward anyone who suggests sane policies. They are convinced that terrorism is the main enemy of this country and Obama has failed to halt its spread. They also are convinced this nation depends for its economic survival on our top 5% of wealthy people. During my 84 years as an American I have never witnessed such a love of wealthy people and dislike of poor ones. Frankly, this is the confusion that drives me crazy. Why do so many Americans adore those who have rather than those who do not?

We are less racial and more stupid is the problem. I suspect when unions left the scene we lost an institution that provided education and realism to the average American worker. Today, they rely on things like Fox News.

Just A Matter Of Time

At this moment that I write there are about 200,000,000 people on this planet who reside in a country that was not their native land. In other words, there are hundreds of millions who fall into the category of being An IMMIGRANT. My parents fled eastern Europe after the end of World War I seeking a place of safety and refuge from war or poverty as well as the vicious anti-Semitism that prevailed in their native lands. As I write, there are at least two million people whose native land is in Syria, but have fled because of war or religious hatred or not particularly enjoying life in Assad Syria. The majority who have fled are Muslims, but there begins the problem–which type of Muslim? Shiite or Sunni or whoever? The overwhelming majority are now in a Muslim nation. Alas, that is where the problem begins. Muslim nations in the Middle East never cease complaining about the evils of Israel, but when it comes to welcoming their fellow Muslims, the end result is anger, discrimination and refusal to offer assistance. No Middle Eastern nation has allowed refugees from Israel-Palestine– to become citizens. So, why should Turks behave any different?

There are over a million Syrians in Turkey whose government has responded to the crisis with care and concern. But, to the average citizen, an immigrant is “not one of us.” Over a thousand people in the province of Kaharmanmares rioted against local Syrian refugees and chanted words of hate and violence. I live in America, the land which is 100% made up of immigrants. Which nation of the world surpasses us in expressions of hate toward immigrants? Turkish demonstrators said immigrants were –criminals– words that flow from Tea Party followers. To be an immigrant is not to be a person who will get a welcome wagon greeting.