Monday, November 30, 2009

Israel VS Palestine….Jews VS Muslims












I have often pondered on this subject and as many times as I have thought about it I can’ come up with a solution or even take sides.

The reality for me is that both deserve and have a right to have their own homeland. If it is so important for a group of people to pray a certain way or dress a certain way or follow a set of beliefs a certain way, then they should have the option of being together as a homogeneous group.

Don’t ask me to take sides because as I see it there is very little difference between the two. Let me elaborate: They are both fanatical when it comes to their religious beliefs and they are both totally blind as to the nature of the scriptures they follow. It matters not that these documents, or tablets or whatever the fuck they base their faith are fabricated and written by men thousands of years ago.

There is where they both miss the point, as do the Fundamentalist Christians in our own society and the rest of the Western world. I really see no discernible difference if you bang your head against a wall or rock back and forth while reciting the ancient texts. Or if you prostate yourself five times daily beckoned by a cacophonic cry coming from some distant tower.

Does it really matter that in order to be in peace with your God you must wear a funny cap on your head or a tablecloth? Does it matter if your infant sons are mutilated at birth destroying their ability to enjoy sexual relations when they are grown because your religion dictates it? Is it necessary for you to go out and in order to obtain validation for your beliefs you have to convert everyone that crosses your path? (that is particularly directed towards our Christian Evangelicals)

We in our Western societies have formulated some erroneous opinions of the two religions and the two ethnic groups. For the longest time during the influence of the old Soviet Union the Muslim and Arab peoples were encouraged by the Soviet Union to be antagonistic towards the capitalist powers. It was a given in those days that if you were an Arab chances were that you were also a leftist or even a communist. I am generalizing but that was the perception.

Conversely, because of the nature of the Jewish faith, being closer to the Christian because of the following of the Old Testament by both, the western nations and peoples identified more readily with the Jewish plight.

Enter the horrific process of ethnic cleansing that the Jewish people endured during the Nazi regime and the subsequent holocaust and you have a very sympathetic and even guilt ridden western world who felt that in order to correct the wrongs of the German atrocities they now must be totally and unconditionally pro-Israel.

The truth as I said lies somewhere in between. These are both members of the human family and they both have their heavy burden to bear. I think that once the dependency on the fuel that comes from the Arab nations subsides, so will the problem. Eventually, both factions will have to come to terms with their condition and their awkward situation and resolve once and for all that they have to co-exist like the brothers and sisters that we are.

PHOTO SOURCES: http://therealbarackobama.files.wordpress.com/2009/10/jerusalem-1.jpg

http://christophermattix.files.wordpress.com/2009/06/wailing-wall-jerusalem2.jpg

http://www.subsidesports.com/uk/images/product/large/PalestineFlagBig08.gif

http://globalkingdom.ca/uploads/images/0001/4835/israel_flag.jpg

http://www.iranbusinesswatch.com/ibwcontent/en/entertainment/museums/Bandar%20Lengeh%20Mosque%20Minarets,%20Hormozgan.jpg

Newsmax: Turning Point: Couric Rips Obama


Katie Couric may be best known for her unflattering interview with Sarah Palin. But her nightly news broadcast this past Monday night may be an indicator that the big liberal media are now turning their guns on Obama.

Couric said on “CBS Evening News” that Americans are growing “disenchanted” with Obama and are openly questioning his credibility.

“Is the honeymoon over?” anchor Couric said at the beginning of her correspondent’s report.

“Although President Obama has been in office less than a year, many Americans are growing disenchanted with his handling of the enormous problems he and the country are facing, from healthcare to unemployment to Afghanistan.

“His poll numbers are sliding, and at least one poll shows his job approval rating has fallen, for the first time, below 50 percent.”

Correspondent Chris Reid chimed in: “The president is getting battered on everything from the economy to foreign policy. Some polls show Americans are increasingly questioning his credibility.”

Yes, Katie Couric is criticizing and she is entitled to do so, you see, she is a legitimate journalist, you morons; not a mouthpiece for the Republican Party like Newsmax or Faux-Fox News. That is Katie’s job and it is also an integral part of civilized discourse.

What is not acceptable and highly immoral is what Newsmax and Faux News have been doing even before President Obama took office; that is to vilify him and dehumanize him in order to fulfill their own agendas. Lies, exaggerations and misrepresentation do not constitute civilized discourse. If no one has told you this, then I am. It is downright immoral and unpatriotic. You don’t spread rumors; purposely tell lies in order to hurt your opponents because it is simply disingenuous.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Lou Dobbs for President?

Lou Dobbs for President? You’ve got to be kidding!

Now we’ve heard it all: Lou Dobbs wants to challenge Sen. Robert Menendez, a New Jersey Democrat, as a third-party candidate for the U.S. Senate in 2012, according to The Wall Street Journal. (He also may run for president, naturally.) Dobbs told reporters that he is "ruling nothing out."


Yes, the world is Dobbs's oyster. But first, he'll have to convince New Jersey Latinos that he's not actually a frothing-at-the-mouth racist, despite his years of incendiary commentary against illegal immigration. If this son of a bitch even gets close, there is no doubt that America is in trouble. Certainly both Republicans and Democrats alike will have enough materials going back many years where Dobbs has expressed nothing but contempt and hatred for Hispanics. We won’t even go into his black stances.


SOURCE: http://www.dailyfinance.com/2009/11/25/lou-dobbs-can-he-take-lessons-from-a-reformed-racist-to-win-a-senate-sea/



Getting into the Christmas spirit

Coming from Cuba, I have never been much to decorate for Christmas and find it very difficult to get into the Christmas spirit living in South Florida. Well, if the temperature outside is eighty degrees and you have the air conditioning going in the house, you look outside and there is no snow it makes it that much more difficult. In Cuba we celebrate Wisemen's day on January 6th, and Christmas eve we have the traditional roast pork dinner with the black beans and rice. That day is for families to get together.

I don’t have a fireplace, but then again, very few people in South Florida do; there is no reason to have one. So there is no place to hang the stockings. But this year, I thought it would be different, I went out to this place called the “Christmas Palace” and I unloaded a grand just in decorations.

The tree is 10’ high, so high that it goes all the way to the living room ceiling. All the shit I bought was very expensive and beautiful. I had stuff ranging from fine cut crystal ornaments to the finest porcelain decorations. I didn’t want a crèche manger thing because I think that is too denominational and a lot of my friends are either agnostic or Jewish so I tried to keep it as secular as possible. There are no religious overtones to my decorations whatsoever, all of it is bells, and trinkets that are generic. I placed it in the living room next to the dining room and it looks terrific.


Since I am not particularly fond of religion, the tree should reflect that. For me the season is dedicated to be with friends and family, to exchange gifts because it is a propitious time to show those that matter to you how much you appreciate them and then it is a time for socializing and partaking in some Bachanalian indulgences

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Sarah Palin is no dummy

Why is it that there are some people enraged about the way Sarah Palin was abused and mistreated by the media? Why is it that their darling rogue from Wasilla is always being vilified by the media? Is this a concerted effort to discredit her and what she stands for? I say categorically: NO!

This question has come up because of Gov. Sarah Palin is featured on the cover of Newsweek Magazine this week, prompting controversy for the picture the magazine selected.

Palin was featured as the cover story "She's One of the Folks", which highlighted Palin's "Joe Six-Pack" appeal, but questioned its relevancy to her VP candidacy. The article cited her interview with Katie Couric as a sign that she piques the interest of voters due to her common appeal. Sarah Palin holds the same type of appeal George W. Bush had because he was so common and incompetent the ignorant and uninformed identified with him and thought of him as “one of them”.

The old girl knows exactly what she is doing. This woman is manipulative, conniving, crafty and well versed in the art of getting even. Her major endeavor right now is to make money and in order to do so she must remain controversial. Controversial figures in our society sometimes tend to do very well financially even if their political futures seem bleak and Sarah Palin’s political stars are not shining for her, they never will. One good example of this is Mr. Rush Bouncy-Bouncy Limbaugh; he has been able to capture the imagination of millions of people with his controversial vitriolic ranting always appearing pompous, arrogant and self-aggrandizing and has made millions doing it.

But what is shinning for Sarah is a cluster of manipulations on her part to make her appear the victim against “them” and placing you on her side (“us”) Them in this case is the elite, intellectual leftist media. There is no such thing of course, as we all know the media has people of every flavor and tonality. But to hear her defenders talk it is as if everyone has come after poor Sarah with a vengeance.

True, she is no Ivy League laureate intellectual. It is true also that the old girl is in no way shape or form qualified to be the President of these United States. It is also true that when it comes to her followers you will be hard pressed to find a high school graduate and what is worse, they don’t know what Sarah Palin stands for, what her beliefs are or even if she has a concrete set of ideas, in other words, she is as devoid of facts and information as the people who are her self-proclaimed followers. This is what we just had eight years of in the person of George W. I speak for myself only, but I would like our President to be smarter than me, more educated than me and frankly, neither Sara nor George fit that profile.

So, don’t feel sorry for Sarah Palin; her fifteen minutes of fame have been extended beyond rationality and it is time they ended or she is going to sink this country into further mediocrity and chaos while she fools all of these naïve and ignorant people as she laughs all the way to the bank. She is getting all this free publicity other women would give their right tit to have.

PHOTO SOURCE: http://blog.newsweek.com/blogs/thegaggle/archive/2009/11/17/official-statement-on-newsweek-s-sarah-palin-cover.aspx

The United States the biggest, the best in everything?

And if you still think that the United States is the biggest and best in everything, please read the statistics down below.

This is an amusing anecdote I can tell you before I present you with the facts: My ex-wife, her parents and my two daughters were on vacation in South America. We went to Iguaçu Falls and the nearby Itaipú Hydroelectric dam. As we were looking at the water spilling over the many spillways I commented to my two daughters then 8 and 10: “girls, this is the biggest hydroelectric dam in the world, it produces enough electricity to power half of South America”

My youngest daughter, puzzled, looked at me and said: “but daddy, it is not in the United States”

Best Country in the World Rankings:

#1 Sweden 1683 points
#2 Denmark 1598 points
#3 Netherlands 1572 points
#4 Finland 1514 points
#5 Germany 1422 points
#6 UK 1407 points
#7 Canada 1373 points
#8 Switzerland 1326 points
#9 Norway 1320 points
#10 Belgium 1208 points

The USA doesn't even make the top 10. I live in the UK and well I am surprised that we rank higher than Canada and especially Norway. Well I am very happy that I have a Swedish passport!

Let's break down the ranking and see the details...

Best "Human Development" = Norway and Iceland
Best "Global Peace" = Norway and New Zealand
Best "Gender Equality" = Sweden and Norway
Highest Life Expectancy = Japan and Hong Kong
Best "Quality of Life" = Ireland and Switzerland
Most Competitive Economy = Switzerland and Finland
Most Economic Freedom = Hong Kong and Singapore
Best "Gay Rights" = Sweden and Norway
Lowest Obesity = Japan and Korea
Highest Adult Literacy Level = Sweden and Norway
Most Open Access to Research = Sweden and Netherlands
Highest Assylum Seeker Acceptance = Denmark and Canada
Most Aid to Developing Countries = Norway and Luxemborg
Highest IT Network Readiness = Denmark and Sweden
Lowest Computer Piracy = USA and New Zealand
Most Secularizartion = Czeck Republic and France

The United Nations produces an annual Human Development Report which includes the Human Development Index. The factors taken into account include life expectancy, adult literacy rate, schooling and Gross Domestic Product. Norway has been the top of this list since ousting Canada in 2001. Here are the top 20 results from 2006:


Top 21 Country & Rank
1. Norway
2. Iceland
3. Australia
4. Ireland
5. Sweden
6. Canada
7. Japan
8. USA
9. Switzerland
10. Netherlands
11. Finland
12. Luxembourg
13. Belgium
14. Austria
15. Denmark
16. France
17. Italy
18. UK
19. Spain
20. New Zealand

"The Economist Intelligence Unit, in conjunction with an international team of academics and peace experts, has compiled an innovative new Global Peace Index (GPI), which ranks 121 nations [using] 24 indicators, ranging from a nation’s level of military expenditure to its relations with neighbouring countries and the level of respect for human rights [...], levels of democracy and transparency, education and material wellbeing. The team has used the latest available figures (mainly 2004-06) from a wide range of respected sources." Global Peace Index website

Best Countries for Global Peace:

1. Norway
2. New Zealand
3. Denmark
4. Ireland
5. Japan
6. Finland
7. Sweden
8. Canada
9. Portugal
10. Austria

A study of 115 countries, assessing patterns of inequality by criteria including: Salaries and economic participation, access to better jobs, political empowerment, educational attainment, health and wellbeing. The league was produced by the Geneva-based World Economic Forum. "While no country has yet managed to eradicate the gender gap, the Nordic countries have succeeded best in narrowing it and, in a very clear sense, provide a workable model for the rest of the world", the report says. "Switzerland, 34th, is amongst the lowest ranking European states, due to its poor record on higher education for women", whilst the UK came in high for its success on the exact same criteria. 2005 data is included to provide a sense of how consistent the rankings are on a year to year basis.

2006 Gender Equality Rank:

1. Sweden
2. Norway
3. Finland
4. Iceland
5. Germany
6. Philippines
7. New Zealand
8. Denmark
9. UK
10. Ireland
11. Spain
12. Netherlands
13. Sri Lanka
14. Canada
15. Australia

Women's Vote

First Countries to give women and equal right to vote:

1893 New Zealand
1902 Australia
1906 Finland
1913 Norway
1916 Denmark, Iceland
1917 USSR
1918 Canada
1919 Austria, Germany, Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, Luxembourg, Czechoslovakia
1920 USA
1922 Ireland
1928 Great Britain
1944 France
1945 Italy, Japan
1963 Afghanistan, Congo, Iran, Kenya, Morocco
1971 Switzerland

Since then, all countries have followed suit, apart from Saudi Arabia.

Top 10 Life Expectancy:

1. Japan age 82.0
2. Hong Kong age 81.6
3. Iceland age 80.7
4. Switzerland age 80.5
5. Australia age 80.3
6. Sweden age 80.2
7. Italy age 80.1
8. Canada age 80.0
9. Israel age 79.7
10. France age 79.5

Life expectancy reflects overall cultural health, including diet, the health services systems, attitudes to exercise and well being, and also family structure and caring. Life expectancy stats are sometimes skewed by taking into account immigration, so that much of the time stats are compiled of natural-born inhabitants only.

Quality of Life

"The survey was prepared for the Economist's "World in 2005" publication, with the remit: "Where will be the best place to live in 2005?" Researchers took into account not just income, but other factors considered important to people's satisfaction and well-being. They included health, freedom, unemployment, family life, climate, political stability and security, gender equality and family and community life." BBC News 2004 Nov 17

1 Ireland
2 Switzerland
3 Norway
4 Luxembourg
5 Sweden
6 Australia
7 Iceland
8 Italy
9 Denmark
10 Spain

Gay Rights

Sweden in 1987 was the first country to make steps towards full gay marriage, with a system of registered partnerships which specifically allowed gay partners to marry. Followed by Norway in 1993 which granted almost full legal equality for gay partnerships. Many countries have not yet got the state of tolerance that allows gay equality. There are still, in this day and age, countries where the death penalty is carried out against homosexuals (Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan and other Muslim nations)

Environment

For each country, the number of companies in the Sustainability Index was divided by the number of companies in the Global Index. This give the percent of eligible countries in the index.


Sustainability Index Attainment

1. Finland 84.9%
2. Switzerland 82.4%
3. Germany 75.2%
4. UK 68%
5. Netherlands 64.5%
6. Spain 63.4%
7. Sweden 56.6%
8. Norway 33.1%
9. Denmark 33.1%
10. Belgium 32.8%

Secularization

The Pew Research Center conducted a survey of 44 countries to find out what percentage considered their religion to be important. This data supports 'Secularisation Theory': That the more developed countries are less religious. In other words: Religion declines as society advances.

Country and Percent of Population that adheres to a religion:

1. Czech Republic 11%
2. France 11%
3. Japan 12%
4. Bulgaria 13%
5. Russia 14%
6. Germany 21%
7. Vietnam 24%
8. South Korea 25%
9. Italy 27%
10. Slovakia 29%

Canada and the UK narrowly missed the top 10 with 30% and 33% respectively. The USA is the only developed country to appear above 50%. The Nordic states would probably appear with 20-30% religiosity.

We don’t even want to talk about Healthcare, now do we? Because if we do, we have to point out that we pay more for it than any other industrialized country, get the worst care and still leave millions of Americans without any coverage at all. Even communist Cuba, a third world, very poor country has a better healthcare system than the United States.

So, whenever somebody comes and fills their sorry mouths with false patriotism and confronts you with this arrogant attitude that was so prevalent during the Bush years and still remains as one of the trait characteristics of Republican assholes, refer to this set of facts and let them choke on the vomit of their stupidity. They are not fabricated nor are they the product of some left wing media propaganda tool; what they are is reality staring us in the face.

SOURCE: http://seapriestess.blogspot.com/


DON’T QUESTION MY PATRIOTISM

Why don’t we clarify this, you may say that I don’t love this country, but I do, perhaps a lot more than you, and I am talking to those who want the President to fail. I have never thought I would see the day when I heard people express their desire to have their President to fail or worse yet, actually praying for him to fail and even be dead. What kind of monsters are you? You applauded when America didn’t get the Olympics?

If you wish harm on your President you are wishing harm on America and in my book that is not patriotism, that is treason. Even if you don’t agree with some of his policies or even all of them, you don’t wish harm on the country that saw your birth, your home, your family, your friends and even complete strangers that depend on this country’s survival and success to make it in life themselves.

Perhaps you Republicans, Tea Baggers, Evangelicals and otherwise malcontents ought to examine your priorities. Is it your country or is it your political party first? Is it your religion or the place you call home? Is it your ignorance and resentment of those who think for themselves and are able to succeed and prosper that you resent? Is it that you also resent people who are so different than you that you think of them as not American enough?…well, with all due respect, if that is what you think then you are a xenophobe, or a racist or a homophobe, there is no other explanation. And that, assholes is not patriotism nor is it what America stands for.

You don’t become patriotic by wearing a lapel pin or flying the American flag on a high pole outside your house. It is not watching the Fourth of July parade nor do you obtain patriotism by adhering stupid bumper stickers on your car; even prayer wishing God to help America win a stupid war. God should not be taking sides because our adversaries are praying too. We should take a long hard look at ourselves and re-think all that has happened and the reasons for it rather than embrace some one-liner talking point you repeat like a parrot without thinking of the consequences or even the causes. Think for yourselves and don’t believe in lies, you know who they are and they may sound good at the moment you hear them but these are demagogues and opportunists who are exploiting you.

And if you do that, and still come up with the answer that you favor conservatism over progress, if you hate and despise people who think and appear different than you, then I say you are not patriotic.