What a storm! Thank goodness, FEMA will pitch in to recovery, but . . .

Mega-Storm

Satellite image of Sandy approaching the Mid-Atlantic area.

By Isis Win

Disclaimer: English is my second language and regardless of all my efforts, I fall short to master it in a way that I make myself easy to read. Please, be patient and hopefully you get the idea at the end of my text. However, feel free to leave any criticism, suggestion and comment. That will help me and expedite my learning of your wonderful but no so easy language. Thanks!

A perfect storm hits the east coast to teach many that we cannot assume life is free, safe and fun when it comes to mother nature. In fact, when we think of mother nature, although we can get awed by the beauty that most of us appreciate so much, it will do from time to time what it is due to do. Those other natural things that disagree with populated areas and lives. Scientist frequently have offered their opinion in this regard to bring consciousness about a natural global change that will onset what we have known historically. Weather patterns are changing and with them, disasters that although no new in our planet, today, they are unprecedented. This mega storm makes the case clearly. Nevertheless, although sadly it brought a loss of two dozen plus people and damage still is not truly evaluated, we know it is something that will take quite a long time to fix it. It is estimated that it will exceed the one billion dollars, perhaps two. Since we all are familiar with the caliber of this disaster, I will spare you from reading redundancy. Instead, I will like to address part of this mother nature reminder. Same that I blogged about, a year ago when Romney during a debate to gain the official republican nomination, stated that FEMA’s budget needed to be reconsidered and his statement clearly sounded like it should be reduced or removed. Our lower financial health is the number one national security threat. Managing our budget to pay off our national debt to foreign loans and reducing our growing deficit is a needed action to take place right away. Reducing or removing federal aid to FEMA would be as dramatic or worse than ignoring the budgetary problem or the mega storm itself. The voice that presented that scenario, is the voice of a business man who sees opportunity on simply shutting down an ill businesses and sell what is left as a scrap. Fine, if that works in that business but removing federal aid to the nation’s problem does not any promise eliminating that national threat. Interestingly, Romney’s supporters missed the eloquent value of that idiocy of his when addressing a needed federal change that he only could deliver. Today and again, he changed course and supports FEMA’s needs. He is going to do whatever he feels is necessary to grab the sit even if he does not mean what he says or he says what he doesn’t mean.

When Al-Qaeda attacked the Twin Towers, didn’t exclusively contemplated the immense loss of lives the caused. All involved well knew that in order to hurt the USA, putting the country in a precarious financial situation would do much more damage than anything else. Certainly there were huge financial losses as result of this attack. But the American resilience overcame this promptly and effectively. However, as well, that attack was an aggression that provoked action and such action will be reflected in a military response that would cost the US a fortune. This situation was so cleverly managed by extremists, that British and American intelligence gathered false information that pointed Saddam Hussein involved in the attack and that Iraq owned weapons of mass destruction. Even though the UN inspectors insisted that was not the case. Ten years later, not only we know that was false, but we added five thousand lives into our loses and financially, the US was in need of borrowing a few trillion dollars to finance the wars. We can look with positive eyes at this military effort if we wish. Using the fact that Hussein is no longer in power so there is no threat and as well that Bin Laden and some of his top people are no longer – adds to this justification that most would or will celebrate. But the financial damage is here and it will be extremely difficult and lengthy to fix. We will, as we had with many other troubles. It will require loads of compromises, perhaps sacrifices, such as a tax increase once the employment numbers improve but reducing the programs that usually are reduced such as education and FEMA in this case, will not pay off as the businesses that made several million dollars to Romney. However, there is one impending threat that nobody has anything to do with and no one can stop: Mother nature.
Whether we are passing through a man created global change or it is part of nature’s cycles, it is clear the natural disasters of the last decade or so, are beyond imagination and extremely costly. Those disasters will not cease for as long as the weather patterns do not return to the known old patterns. The presence of natural mega tragedies will continue happening and that not only will impose a grand amount of dollars costs but as well, will make unstable our economy every time a grand disaster happens. I bet you that couple of days the Stock Market closed, because Sandy, will cost several millions of dollars to investments.
We’ve seeing huge and strong hurricanes and many more that were usual. Uncanny sand storms, unbelievable rains producing massive floods, droughts unparalleled to our records, extreme temperatures. immense wild fires, and more. And there is no much we can do about it, but endure it. As if that would not be enough, our seven billion population make this tragedies a tremendous losses due to death and displacement of massive numbers of people. This has been happening all over the world not just here. And when these tragedies happen in other region of the world, although what we contribute to help those suffering nations is not significant compared to their tragedy, it adds to our financial toll. But we cannot close our eyes to the pain and suffering of the world. That is not the role of the most powerful nation in the world. Unless we don’t care for what the world perceives of USA. As well, we have to look at the secondary results of these disasters. Gasoline and food go up and even after the situation is normalized, they stay up. Take for instance, Florida recently faced one of the worse freezes in history. Citrus went up at least 50% or more. OK, demand is large, supply is low. However, the prices never went down after they resumed normal production. At least in the Mid-Atlantic area. Same with gas prices. Demand went up, prices went sky high. Demand went down and the small reduction of those prices does not reflect the prices we were paying at the pump when we consumed those lower levels.

The solution to the financial US problem only have one solution and that solution does not depend on our government. It depends on all of us. But the government can very well help to a point that we move in that direction. We need more professional people in all research, development and implementation fields to export our advances and goods. But that cost money. Tons of money and Romney, contrary to Obama will like to reduce the budget for education and related resources. We need millions of professionals that collect incomes in the six digit figures and create new businesses through new technologies. However, wise investors such as Romney, will only invest in secured profit operations and new technologies are not that secured. Unless they prove it over an extended time. Take for instance Facebook. Personally, I do not appreciate the contribution of Facebook, but I admit, my imagination falls short to envision the future benefits of Facebook. However, that new field grew faster than anything previously known. I became parallel to Microsoft, Cisco, Google and many more newer mega million businesses. But investments into Facebook are not moving as it would a share from Apple or Goggle, etc. What is the problem with the investors? The want a secured, sure and fast return. OK, everyone is entitled to do so but we cannot disregard the fact that the USA became what it is, thanks to those professionals, entrepreneurs, scientists and manufacturers and workers. Our most important task is to secure we continue doing so and before other nation wins that technology. China as we speak, is moving forward and faster than any other nation towards Wind Technology. Because Solindra failed we should not push that industry? Obama took a risk and didn’t pay off. Oh well, so what is next?

The legislative body now, specially with the coming elections, is holding Obama’s power and initiative, so he is unable to make drastic investments and subsides to newer technologies. Something that he promises to do if elected. I hope so, because I am sure there will be many more natural disasters and at some point we are going to need to relocate massive amounts of people (think the coast line), develop, create and build new technology in home building industries. As well, we need to do whatever it takes to insure our water supply and agricultural areas are well if we are punished again by mother nature. Natural disasters not only kill tons of people and produce massive costs, but does not allow to survive properly those that heavily depend on meeting ends in this bad economy.

The Obama administration was on top of Sandy. Hurray for Obama! At this point, a few important people are recognizing that this has been the storm of the century. I hope the worse that NY city faces ever! FEMA is ready to tackle the humongous task they have in their hands. Both legislative parties seem to be in agreement about providing the needed funds to FEMA and the rest is a matter of time. Hopefully we put this in the past promptly and likely we will forget about it during the election day. But we maybe thrown back into remembering it, depending on who is elected. We don’t need another Bush and Katrina. Hopefully, Obama receives the deserving credit for being there when he was needed and wins this election. As you can see, at this point I truly know who I am voting for. I am voting for progress, change and a future that we all can count on!

National Security Defense: Do we need more to cope with the threats of the 21st century?

By Isis Win

National security and the military budget has been under the microscope since I started to remember. Previous to the end of the Cold War, it was the largest  issue on the media and the minds of the global politically minded. Both super powers, the USA and USSR balanced their budgets at all times while bordering bankruptcy. The Cold War ended and the regular negotiations among the atomic weapons countries slowly but surely reduced the amount of nuclear heads and as well, the Huge cost of producing them and maintaining them. It was said often the Soviets could not properly maintain their nuclear arsenal due to the cost. Building a stronger and more capable armed forces never stop though. Technological progress has been a drive that the military always depend on. Although research aimed to achieve supremacy in the military field, that research as well benefited most average citizens in many areas. For instance, GPS is a technology developed and exclusively used by the military but today, even smart phones provide this very useful tool. As well, the medical field provided many advances that today are used in American civil hospitals. Nevertheless, the argument about military spending has always been a matter of debate and scrutiny. There are too many questions about this, but the number one has always been: Do we have enough? Are we better equipped and prepared that the rest of the world? A very difficult topic to be sort out without doing tons of research and confirmation of the found information. Some people tend to believe that the “enemy” is better equipped and prepared that us. But as well, most people believe that the supremacy that USA showed during the II WW and the Cold War still is a reality. So what is the truth?
I suppose no one would be surprised to known that all armed forces of all countries will not fully reveal their true power. Such is the assumed case of China. That, because it is up to each country to report their arsenal, armed forces numbers etc to the International Community and in compliance with international treaties. But would you be surprised to know that the USA as well will not fully disclose their facts? I tend to believe that it would be impossible to do so because such is a matter of National Security. But as well, we cannot discount the fact that in order to be superior in the war field, opponents should have a few cards under their sleeve. However, just analyzing the official provided numbers of the most powerful militarily nations, will take our breath away when comparing one after another nation. Yes, if you guessed the USA is the most powerful military force in the world. Although when we look into this arena we must think nuclear arsenal first, the reality of the case is that since the likelihood of using those bombs is almost zero, the USA has the most of all weapons and better than the amount, the most technologically advanced weapons. Well, something that is almost impossible to truly know, since likely even the brass in our military forces do not get the full picture of what we have. Even putting together all the small pictures would make the chore of truly figuring out the power of our nation can only be decided in the war field. And the USA certainly did it during the invasion of Iraq and as we will know, the USA proved to have a vast superiority to what Saddam Hussein had in his stock pile. The attack of Iraq went like a breeze for the USA weaponry power. Could that be the same with China, Russia and other powerful nations? Only one way to find out: War.
Presidential candidate Mitt Romney stated that if he arrives to the White House he will provide two trillion dollars to our armed forces. No long ago, the defense budget was presented to the legislative and there were cuts into our defense cost. The arguments went back and forth and the last statement of the proper authorities said that it was OK. The Defense Department will focus instead in improving our capabilities and streamlining our troops. Other nations had done the exact same. It has been clear that the continuous fusion if massive amounts of money into the forces will not insure the proper national security. But the proper training and strategies will definitely present the desired outcome. So, why does Romney offered two extra trillions dollars to our defense department? Hard to tell but it is logic to read such as an infusion of fear to the voter. True, we are under a threat from the extremist Islams of the Persian world. True there are several terrorists groups that could present death, financial loses and insecurity to the USA, the allies and the entire world. But this is a war that cannot be fought with what we see as our military power. In order to fight a war, you need a country that declares war against the US. But no country had done so nor will easily do it. The irony of this scenario would be that the US would not loose such war. Not alone and not with the support of the allies. But the threat we all fear is a guerrilla war that cannot be fought as what we know as a war. The US have developed the means and strategies to fight the terrorists. Through intelligence and remote controlled technology the US has avoided to see a disaster in our land and avoided many disasters abroad. But eliminating absolutely every single attempt is an impossible. Once again, the enemy is not a nation nor an army. So, a two trillion dollar increase into the defense budget will not avoid one.
Now the meat of this point: Why did president Obama reduced the past budget? Because the worse threat to our national security is not being able to balance our deficit and budget. During the Cold War, it was near impossible to reduce anything military. But it was done and more than once and as we can see, there is not tragedy resulted from doing so. Nevertheless, since the days of the Cold War the military budget was one of the biggest suckers of tax money. Do not take my word for it. Visit this website that states everything you will like and need to know about this. The Ten Largest Military Powers In The World up to the end of 2010 are here. Here is the link: http://247wallst.com/2011/04/14/the-ten-largest-military-powers-in-the-world/
This well researched document, published in April 14 of 2011 will show you the facts. If you lack the time to do so, here are some of the highlights. I will share with the the three on the top of some important facts and stats.
1. USA
> Spending 2010: $698 Billion
> Change 2001 – 2010: 81.3%
> Share of GDP: 4.8%

2. China
> Spending 2010: $[119] Billion
> Change 2001 – 2010: 189%
> Share of GDP: [2.1]%
3. UK
> Spending 2010: $59.6 Billion
> Change 2001 – 2010: 21.9%
> Share of GDP: 2.7%

What? Russia is not among the three top nations? Surprising isn’t it? Well, lets get to Russia but not before:
4. France
> Spending 2010: $59.3 Billion
> Change 2001 – 2010: 3.3%
> Share of GDP: 2.3%

5. Russia
> Spending 2010: $[58.7] Billion
> Change 2001 – 2010: 82.4%
> Share of GDP: [4]%

But these numbers will not present a clear picture to the average person. What about the sea and air weaponry and as well, all the land arsenal? Check this great site, although there are several that present detailed facts and stats, this one will give you a general good idea:
http://www.globalfirepower.com/
In this site you will see that some countries have more something than the US. Such as Russia’s and their submarines or China’s carriers. Not true! Got you! We have more and we have better!
We cannot pass the grand fact that the US have a long and detailed experience with all sorts of weapons and machinery and American engineering and building still is at the very top of the ladder. Other nations will need the same experience to detail and hone their technology. But as well, we civilians are clueless as what the USA have under their sleeves.

Arguing and debating the USA status among international relations or diplomacy is another topic that requires a decent education and command of the facts. However, I will dare to say that what the media and the Obama administration have said in this regard is accurate. We are in a better situation than what we were during the Bush administration. Diplomatic ties and relations will never be perfect but they can be predictable up to some point. Although negotiations may end prematurely and without solving all the issues, what a few call “A mechanical delay to resolution”, is not so. The USA and the allies have strategies and policies that have a proven record of success. Even if the imposed nation of a sanction claims the contrary. In the case of Iran, for instance, they are suffering tremendously with the imposed sanctions. Just talk to anyone in that nation and they will tell you that they are getting ready to do something about it although their government claims there is no reason to fear nothing. And this is the beginning. Now, they once again accepted the invitation to negotiate their nuclear plans and open that is demanded to prove they are not even near to have a nuclear bomb. But as well, they will need the delivery vehicle that at the moment they work on that, the allies will confront them and threaten with military power. The world is ready for that, including the US and without any influx of more trillions of dollars.

Last, we all think, wish, talk of world peace. So do I! But revising our long history, we will find out that we are in one of the most peaceful stages that our world have seeing. But the threat will always be there and there will be times of war. The question today is what kind of war? No one wants any kind but the battle for power, freedom, etc, is part of part of human nature. As my step dad used to tell me and totally infuriated: We are savages! Yes, we are and violence takes place all the time and at all levels. From domestic violence to violence among groups in all nations. We humans know so little about temper and as well, it seems we are unable to control our selves if something tic us off. Such as the case of M. Romney that has not been able to truly present any facts that would invalidate Obama’s place in the White House and in front of the American people. In fact and on that note, the battle between republicans and democrats and the representatives of both ends have trespassed the boundaries of peace. In the case of Romney, he even manipulates the facts the construct fear and hate against Obama. Interesting that General Colin publicly declared support to president Obama’s candidacy but as well, Colin stated his worries about the proposed policies by Senator Romney. Romney as he represents himself is a threat to that peace here, in our country and to the world. I don’t think he means that nor that he truly supports what he says. Although he is a smart man for some things. Romney is not smart enough to run the USA. Just like George Bush, that brought the nation to the worse state the nation has faced in several decades and perhaps in history. The facts speak for themselves and today, we can see that all the warnings about the situation with Saddam Hussein, Taliban and Al Qaeda were right but not in support of Bush. The true experts spoke and never were allowed to prove their knowledge. Instead, Bush invaded Iraq and sent massive amounts of soldiers to Afghanistan, borrowed several trillions of dollars from China, never found Bin Laden nor restore Iraq to human living conditions and Islamist from many countries hate America. More importantly, lost thousands of our soldiers for what? The only benefited from his actions are the corporations that supported the troops, raped the American tax payers and got away with murder without a flick. As well, Bush did not not stopped the mortgage and banking collapse when he warned about a future depression. A depression that was in the media for at least two years. Banks and home sellers made a mint of that but millions of people lost their homes and many more their income.

The cherry of my blog is in turn now. And the cherry is you and every single citizen that instead of repeating what has been said or published, gathers reliable information to make their mind regarding of how they will contribute in the formation of a better country. Well, in a perfect world because although it was clear Bush was not the answer to the nation, he was reelected so he made the chaos and crisis even worse. Frankly, republicans should be grateful to Obama and the democrats because without them, who know how low we could go and end up living a deeper grand depression. True, we are not recovered yet. True it will take a few more years. But reelecting Obama will bring that chance and electing Romney will definitely be a regression to the Bush times.

It is supposed that every single individual is conscious of their actions and results. So, voting is not merely about choosing the candidate we like best but making a choice that will bring the best possible scenario to the nation. That is what makes each of us the cherry on top if the cake. But we must have a cake to have that role and if we lightly make a presidential choice, we may end up losing the entire cake. And we well not even get to enjoy eating it! Most of it has been already eaten with the mortgage and baking unscrupulous people that sold America in exchange of their personal fortune. Oh well! As I said: In a perfect world  . . .  but we are far from that one!

 

A brief interruption in our already scheduled program. No more deportations of young people!

By Isis Win

In the middle of a busy end of spring, I heard president Obama announcing his command to Homeland Security Agency to halt deportation of the children of undocumented immigrants younger than 30 years of age, law-abiding and engaged into education.

Right away, right-wing politicians, including Romney, use this presidential action to attack Obama and to represent themselves as the good guys we must keep and oust Obama. Some are already talking about a “political move from Obama, to gain Latin votes”. Well, if so, good for him because Latinos were an important part of his election in 2008 and many were disappointed for no immigration reform as he promised. Obama simply said: That is the right thing to do. Indeed! Latinos that incorporate themselves into American customs, work hard to better themselves and family and feel rooted in this country as their own, deserve the right to stay and make their case in the court of law. Additionally, the law must allow them to become legal residents with a chance to become naturalized citizens.

But not all undocumented immigrants are entitled to have this same treatment.  My take about this, I would be glad to see many Latinos go back to their country if they are not law-abiding, respect the customs of this country and do not care for changing their ways. The court of law will take care of them. Sadly, there are many of those individuals in the nation and those bad apples misrepresent the good ones because Americans tend to believe that all Latinos are like them. But as well, why add more danger and risk in this country, specially from undeserving people. But what about those that are law-abiding and hard-working undocumented Latinos? It seems this is like a miniseries and in order to see the next episode, we must make sure the same characters stay in the play. Reliable sources have told me Obama’s team has been diligently working on that reform that Latinos have been waiting for. No cigar yet because this effort is considering many of the interest and views of state authorities that are more affected than the rest of the nation. States like California, Texas, etc. Can you imagine if all undocumented Latinos in LA would be deported? The thousands of vacancies that no others want to fill nor get hired for them because the work is harder than the pay they can get for. Ask most undocumented Latinos if that position is unfair between pay and the required labor. I’ve done so anytime I get a chance and they say: Gimnme the job now! And they take it and will keep it forever! I’ve met dozens of undocumented workers at Universal Studios theme park. Of course, they are “legally” in this country! Yes, so far there is no mechanism that forces employers to verify Gestapo style that they are indeed undocumented. But ask their bosses and they will say: Undocumented? They are not and if they would be, we would make them legal! Well . . .  The part of the second episode that Obama will deliver in his next period.

But I am painting the “Rosie version” of this story. The blue version says that thousands of legal Latinos will not vote for Obama, even though they did in the past election. Why not? Well . . . They fully disagree with the gay issue and Obama’s support to same-sex marriage rights. Go figure! Latinos are and have been by excellence the countries with the most macho attitude and ultra religious views! So, Obama sabotaged himself and the election by showing his support to this right. Oh! Do you know that last night he had dinner with several gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people to celebrate gay pride month? I see arrows encrusted in his chest, arms and legs by nothing else but our Latin brothers and sisters!

The news this past Friday was definitely good news, Coming from our president, this rule is to be observed by all government agencies even if the republicans demonstrate against Obama or throw tantrums in both chambers! And for those that do not read the papers often, most Americans are behind civil human rights favored by Obama! But by no means, this represents that Obama will have his chance to another presidential period. The facts on that side are that many of the very important states that supported Obama in the past election are going through an impasse because Obama’s support for many of those issues. Polls are showing that the gap between Romney and Obama had been closing in the recent weeks and those states that are not fully defined at this point, if they go GOP or the contrary can unbalance the rest of the nation. Therefore, we all that still believe in Obama or those that give him the benefit of the doubt not only will have to vote for him but we need to contribute to his campaign. Remember, we are only 5 months away from election day! So the balance should be more defined by now. But as is, there is a change we cannot take at all. Electing Romney would be the worse that could happen at this juncture, for our nation and the world! A very delicate balance of the economy in the European nations, a crisis ready to explode with Syria due to Russia protecting their military interest in that nation and the unbalance in the Persian and African nations that are threatening the balance of the world if theocratic regimes take over such is the no so good-looking situation in Egypt! We need a president with guts, a vision about political balance and not ruled by fear but justice and fairness! If Obama makes it to the White House this coming period, we have a chance but if not, it has been clear that Romney not only will be a redundancy of Bush’s regimes but will increase the gap between the 1% and the rest of the population. Something that we cannot afford at all.

Latin brothers and sisters, allow me this occasion to represent my unconditional support for Obama and inquire you to do the same. Not because we are part of the LGBT world, not because we are Latinos, but because we are conscious of what our nation, families and world need now! We cannot afford a “trial” period in which the chief sitting at the White House is trying to figure out how to make sure he would rule for a second period in 2016. Lets give Obama that chance and be behind him all the way through because that this nation needs the most, is that we all remember that whether we are LGBT, Latinos, black, Asian, whatever, we are the people who pulls the world forward and we need no more fear and instability and we can conquer that goals because, yes we can!

Reprinted from: http://xqsimagazine.com/2012/06/16/a-brief-interruption-in-our-already-scheduled-program-no-more-deportations-of-young-people/

 

Presidential Equality.

By Isis Win

This past Sunday, I watched Vice President Biden candidly say on “Meet the Press” that he has no issue about gay couples and their desire to marry.

Coming from the second highest office, this is something that cannot be taken lightly. As well, he mentioned that he believed President Obama has been supportive of LGBT people, although Biden did not compromise and assert Obama’s position. This was followed by all the news services and of course, the questions about: “A political mistake? Compromised the upcoming vote? Political maneuver?” popped wildly. However, the press had no clue in regard to the presidential take and position on this issue that had become almost as important as the economy in recent days. Previously, the press reported Obama does not support Marriage Equality.

See excerpt of this interview here: http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/video/obama-sex-marriage-legal-16312940

It is extremely hard to know what is the true level of general support for this effort and as well, the counter movement. Even after the many polls and the numbers skewed to figure the true numbers, there is no true statistic.  This is an issue that covers a spectrum much larger than left-center-right political views. Religion, moral beliefs and the personal state of mind, and as well the feelings of each person have weight in this issue. Homosexuality has been such a stigmatized issue since the earliest days of our history. Although archeological findings have much to say as to how and what changed in certain times, ostracizing homosexuality has grown on its own for centuries.  Homosexuality has been associated mostly with superstition, bad interpretations of the Bible and other sacred scriptures, but as well, through times in our history homosexuality has been considered decadent and sinful, creating a strong animosity against it. Mostly during times when homosexuality was not closeted, many high rank figures were gay and what was considered marriage in those times was common. But as well, those times were times of major tragedy and famine, such as the events during and after the fall of the Roman Empire, both abroad and their country itself. Superstition was used to justify many of those tragedies as well as many of the natural disasters of the times. The “Wrath of God” at work, and of course, religion took part in these times. However, homosexuality before and during those times, if not accepted, it wasn’t fought and committed gay relationships were allowed.

Today, after Obama’s announcement in support of same-sex marriage, this panorama has changed somehow. There is a positive joy going on around not just because the importance of the first US president supporting Marriage Equality, but as well, it is believed that this news will help the movement for LGBT equality. I have a very different take on this and trust me, I am not a cynic in this regard. The very same way discrimination against LGBT people seemed to be fading, discrimination against African-Americans seemed to be a thing of the past.  The reality is that political correctness and politeness were abandoned by many people who in theory were OK with racial equality. Something that somehow changed post Obama’s election. Something that, to my own disbelief, I’ve witnessed personally in many realms walks of life: Many voters despise Obama because he is black. The reality is, while African-Americans were accepted “across the board”, that didn’t include having a black president. A president with different ideology (socialist as alleged by many conservatives), opposition party, etc, is one thing but an African-American that will determine the future of the entire nation? That is unacceptable by many. People do not express openly their views in this regard, unless in the presence of others who they know are in the same place. I heard things such as: The trust and importance of the White House in the world will be severely demerited by a black president. A black person lacks the necessary quality and style of an American president. I even heard people calling him a monkey. The same is the case with homosexuality. Prior to President Obama’s Pro Equality announcement, a lot of people refrained from sharing their opinion openly about same gender marriage. But today, many are infuriated that our president, a Democrat, who in their view “has done nothing for the country and themselves”, has made many serious mistakes and now is supporting something that most people believe is immoral and against the biblical beliefs. I find the hatred against Obama exhibited in many of these conservatives now is a combo of hate against Obama with homosexuality. People seem to fear change more than any previous time in American history and their fear, becomes unproportional to reason and logic. It is no more than shutting the door to both issues, as much as any issue that represents change and tradition that seems threatened.

I liked Obama’s interview and what he said. Particularly when he mentioned the “Golden Rule”: “Don’t do to others what you don’t want to be done with you”. Exactly! Where would the president be if he realizes that one of his daughters is a lesbian and desires a committed and legally supported marriage? What many people fail to see, is that compassion and generosity are some of the most positive and influential forces that make everything better, for everyone. People seem to overlook the fact that freedom is a necessary and mandatory state of life to achieve the best possible growth in life. Denying legal marriage to gay and lesbians, is a form of denial of this freedom. Something that perhaps didn’t matter to them much before, but today is a vital need. Regulations and laws do not permit couples out of legal marriage to benefit from federal and state perks that come along with the accomplishments of their obligations and the necessary requirements to claim legal rights when the partner is unable to decide for her/himself or deal with the legal and necessary rights in case of death, child custody, and divorce. But all unjust civil issues take their place in the roster of what needs to be addressed at some point. Many racial issues somehow have been worked out and only time will decide how much gain comes from it. So far, African-Americans have been able to achieve higher education, predominant places in all industries and fields, including the military, and so having a president of African-American origin definitely changes that perspective for them by many folds. Black people today, especially young generations, increased their aspirations and confidence because America elected one of them.
I’ve heard educated and upper (or more) middle class people wondering if allowing same-sex marriage rights at some point will allow having a gay or lesbian (and couples) elected as an US president. This is a terrible miss and a short-sighted view because what a nation really needs and can benefit from, is having capable people in charge that are willing of giving their very best to the nation. Lincoln was not fully accepted when running for the White House chair because his education and social status. But his mind and heart were much more than brilliant and with his “limited” resources, not only saved the nation in one of the most difficult times in American history, but he pushed the nation better than what many presidents had done. Those shoes will be hard to fill for a long time.
I really hope that this testimony from the President does not do any more harm to his effectiveness and re-election goals, and helps many to persuade themselves that denying a basic civil right to a few – that is supposed to be granted to everyone, does not treat anything or anybody fairly or justly.
Apparently many people opposed to Obama and LGBT rights now – out of the blue – became very vocal and are taking initiative to broadcast their views to fight LGBT equality and president Obama. Perhaps before president Obama’s testimony supporting LGBT people and marriage equality, people who never cared nor believed this right would be granted are reacting to this news, but Obama’s support “awakened” their animosity and in just a few hours past this testimony, they became quite vocal and active to show their true sentiment. The irony of this case is: God didn’t invent marriage. Marriage is a human invention that through centuries and millennia had changed about the reasons to exist. For instance, at some point it was used to halt women from seeking relationships out of marriage and if doing so, they would be executed by law. Men were allowed to do exactly that. As well, during some history periods, this was the tool for fathers to make any claim about their children. Gay and lesbians care for legal marriage simply because they care of having the exact same legal rights all other couples do. Legal rights that will not exist for as long as their marriage is not legally recognized and granting Civil Union rights is not the same. Still is a form of control and discrimination and there is no true reason within the human realm that can justify such aberration. As well, religious beliefs must be left in the hands of the parishes the very same way the government doesn’t have the right to state, regulate, etc, them. The will of the church is free from this. Government and religion are two different and separate entities that by any means should not be mixed, as the US Constitution states. So why do people fight marriage equality as an item of biblical reasons?

The world is not going to become gay across the board because of same-sex marriage equality. There is no way that a straight man or woman is going to turn gay because nondiscrimination laws are in place. The very same way that a gay person cannot switch to being straight, heterosexual people cannot change their sexual or gender orientation; that is innate and unchangeable. Let history speak about this so people can see that homosexuality has existed through our entire presence in the physical realm and never produced any harm to anyone or anything. Nothing has changed, regardless of the many efforts through our history to fight them, and even to eliminate them, such as the genocide of homosexuals in many cultures through centuries. Middle east nations still do that!  Despite these oppressions, no one, absolutely no one is capable of changing what is built-in, what we are born with.

More importantly, it is evident that those who are allowed to be themselves, freely and without concern, have been individuals that fulfilled their role in life and often for the benefit of many others of all ethnic backgrounds, walks of life, social status, etc. regardless of all the limitations and denial of their rights. In fact, this denial is so unfair, unjust, stupid and non-sensical because many of the best contributors in all realms to the American life were (and are) people that had been ostracized by society and their obsolete rules. These people never focused on the unfairness that was imposed in them. Instead, they focused on the talents they were born with and poured all their dedication to render their best to all. And because of their pride of being, they survived all. But no one is “cut from the same cloth”, nor has the same abilities as anyone else. Some need to be supported in order to explore their gifts of birth and to not deal with a lifestyle that needs to fight everyone and the establishment. Let them live freely and join the battle of moving from our ankylosis and bring fortune and well-being to themselves and everyone. Let everyone be free! Everyone must have the right to choose whatever they wish!

I thank President Obama for taking a stand in this issue, although the possibility of making him to lose this coming election now is larger, judging from this reaction. What President Obama has done is to be himself; an honest, fair, compassionate human being and a President to all, including the underdog. Something to celebrate forever.

Primary shaping up, election showing clear signs.

By Isis Win

We are into the fourth year of one of the most difficult times in history of the USA and the American people. The impact of a failing economic system threatened by a crumbling banking and mortgage industry, the largest deficit in history, unparalleled levels of unemployment and sub-employment, and two wars that, although delivering some desired results, in more items failed the “strategy” to address the real issues that prompted them and have created the largest division between American people. For the sake of truth, the start of this tough times are not correlated with the actual regime of Democrat President Barrack Obama. These issues are the result of the previous administration that failed to act timely, to develop infallible strategies, acted impulsively, denied losing ground on any of those issues and lied to the American people from the very start.

Considering that in the political world all sorts of manipulations and lies can take place, it has been extremely difficult to most Americans to arrive to a consensus that could lead to an absolute resolution than will straighten our path. On the contrary, we are more divided than in any other period of the American history and the Republican Party no longer is what our ancestors experienced.
The party became fragmented much before the elections of 2008. During the two regimes of the Bush – Cheney administration, the party failed to address all of the above issues as they were happening. This previous administration achieved the heaviest and strongest power an American regime ever had. Democrats could only challenge Republicans in the arena of debate but in the long run, the administration always presented a “reality” based on their “facts”. Facts that time has shown many important speeches from Bush, were fully false and deceiving. But do not ask a Republican if the previous administration failed at large. They will blame Democrats for any and every single mistake that took place during those 8 years and now. But the facts don’t lie and today, we all are facing the disastrous results of the lies and mistakes that only benefited some of the largest corporations in the country. But the American people still are at bay and hoping that this coming regime will save us from this long agony, something that the Republican primary front-runners have been exploiting to their “advantage”, blaming Obama and his party for the actual reality we face today.

In 2009, Obama’s place was to fix all the inherited problems to prove that he is the rightful person to lead the nation. However, although those problems mentioned above didn’t collapse into further disaster. These problems prevail, something that was expected from academics and analysts because the severity of the simultaneous conflicts. But as well, Obama’s initiative to address one of the most important issues of the country, an issue that has not been addressed for decades, an issue even when Republicans and Democrats put all their eggs in the nest at some point, never happened: The Health Care issue. Obama’s bill has been heavily criticized by the Republicans as a failed and insolvent program to address this toxic situation and has been taken into the public opinion arena – as a sign of failure of his administration. However, the irony of this case is that several of measures included in this bill, are the exact measures that many Republicans presented (including McCain and Romney), supported and advocated in favor of for the last two decades. Yet Obama’s compromise is used today by Republicans as an example of an eroding aspect of the American future.

It takes no effort to look back into our recent years of political and government history. The evidence never disappeared from the popular view but Republicans filtered these facts and pointed them against Obama. Obama’s mistakes. Nevertheless, they override the undeniable facts such as: The attack to the Trade Center. It was a failure of the Bush administration to recognize any possible validity of this attack and they let it happen. As well, the warnings about the invasion of Iraq and the removal of Saddam Hussein in a pre-emptive way. Also, the failed policies to return Iraq post-invasion to normalcy by integrating most of what could be, in a heavily and historically ethnically divided nation. That, instead of integrating a nation with centennial history of division, has taken place with uncanny violence against each other. As a consequence, many of those Arab enemies are our enemies now. Today, Iraq has a weak and unprepared army (when it was the strongest in the region) that the US has been training to bring up to speed and will continue doing so for decades to come. It takes decades to train an efficient army. Another undeniable fact is that Bush assured the American people Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction when the UN repetitively said the contrary, that Hussein had close ties with Al-Qaeda and as well said “the invasion would be short-lived and presents no threat or real loses for the American military power”. Five thousand deaths later, a massive cost, and Iraq still is in shambles, we have the real facts on sight.  We know the truth. Just about any Iraqi says they were better off when Hussein was in power. If these facts don’t suffice to account for the failed and fallacious previous administration, the one responsible for the problems we face today, then there is no argument to figure why we are where we are. However, Republicans blame Obama for these problems. But in reality this is an eloquent statement about a divided, biased and arbitrary way of looking our old and known America.  The America that no longer is as remembered before the start of the 21st century. We need to get back to that America for the sake of our future generations.

Not everything is Bush’s fault. On top of the list are: The American people who didn’t question any of those facts as they were happening. The legislative body that failed to obligate the administration, based on the exercise of their – democratically provided – power to demand the evidence and written plan of action. The US armed forces and all politicians that spoke on behalf of the Bush administration failed too. An interesting fact is that among  the top of that list is Sara Palin, that divided many folds more the American people with her biased, uneducated, angry, hostile and extremist “political” rhetoric. The very reason Republicans lost the election. Instead, they gave room to Democrat Obama whose rhetoric was based on providing for the middle class people and taking away power from the corporations that as well, are responsible for the actual status of our nation. It is true, unemployment is rampant because the mortgage failure, but we can’t ignore the fact that millions of jobs moved overseas due to cheap out-sourcing. Those jobs were already missing when we needed them so badly and this displaced a work force that never got the proper training to take high-tech jobs, as Reagan suggested would be the case. Although the Tea Party was born as an alternative movement to the Republicans whose party looks nothing moderate, because of its ambition to seize power, in reality it did more damage to the far right and to the country, than a conscious political benefit to the nation. A clear manifestation that the American people are not happy anymore by being neglected for a long time, left and right Americans are exactly in the same place, and share a place in the same boat.

Today, the American panorama is one of the saddest in American history. Republicans and Democrats fail to join efforts to overcome the shortcomings of a global financial problem, the environmental threat of global warming and ozone depletion, the energy crisis that somehow “disappeared” <due to blindness> right after the oil crisis of the early 70s, our failing educational problem that places us in 20th place ranking world wise in the 2009 Human Development Report – 13th according to the Education Policy Institute (and never even among the top ten any other ranking organization), threatens our fragile safety at home and abroad by terrorists, as well the massive abuses of large corporations that get away with murder and at the cost of tax dollars, the lack of confidence in the American people and the weakening of an economy that still provides the tax cuts from the previous administration. Tax cuts that were put in place when the cost of all our initiatives far exceed our gross product. Isn’t this some kind bribe from our Republican government that blinded us from the truths of what we were getting into? But we “can” blame Obama for all that, as if doing so will fix any of the above problems.

Republicans insist they are the only ones able to address and fix the country. But they throw dirt on each other and accuse each other of unprepared, inexperienced,  unpatriotic and plainly ambitious for the sake of personal benefit and ego trips.

If you take just a quick glance at Wikipedia and their description of the Great Depression, you will find that the solutions to our failed economy of today, compared to those times (massive lay offs and the failure of many banks if not most), are ahead of schedule and we are on the right track. During the next four years we will witness the benefits of this administration initiatives and all of the above will drastically improve regardless of who is in power, but only if the issues that triggered our actual situation never happen again. Romney has clearly shown lacking of any vision and experience to manage this, but his word. He never presented any evidence to the case even when challenged by his own peers. Recently Gingrich accused him of “being a liar”.  Gingrich was asked two or three times the same question and he asserted it. The next presidential period will demand leaving politics behind – to address, really address – what is needed to get back into our pre-21st century status. None of the primaries’ front-runners offer what it takes to do so. Perhaps Obama doesn’t either, but it is a fact that Obama is several folds more promising that ALL the Republicans together. In other words, the upcoming election has been already decided because the American people do not suck their thumb anymore. The American people are fed up with this vitriolic situation created by the Republicans. That is something that the Republicans can be blamed for and they should take responsibility for it. This past year has been clear enough to represent the poor status of the American politics and this effort has been lead by the Republicans and just because they seek to seize power at any cost. But if I am wrong, what a serious situation we will face if the White House lands on the hands of Mitt Romney. Through all my years witnessing politics and all I’ve extensively read, Romney most champions the realm of “out of touch” among all politicians ever in the US landscape. His image, to anyone who is capable of seeing the truth, is nothing less than the same image of several presidential runners that African countries had! Countries that crumbled by a poor notion of patriotism, lack of experience, and vision, with corruption and a lack of a political view that was necessary in their countries. Today, they are worse than ever in their history. Are we heading that way? Lead by deceit, lies, coercion and a promise of a place that will take years to recover?

Although all mentioned is important, what is on top of all, is the sole fact that when we think and talk about the American people, American people means every single law-abiding American. Ethnic groups, sexual and gender orientation, gender, education, financial and social status should not bear any importance when we consider the country. After all, we all are Americans and although our personal well-being matters to most of us first, our well-being depends greatly on the well-being of the nation. For as long as we are divided, we are no longer civilized, and progress only will be a view in a desert that no one habitats, Just like the different Arab ethnic groups that are destroying each other and their countries, as Iraq and the other nations facing social revolutions are. This is what the previous administration left us behind. Division, division, division! Division in Iraq, division in the Arab world, division in American politics and division among us. It is time to truly listen to Obama and make a true and solid effort to conciliate our bi-partisan differences, regardless of anything. What is at stake is our entire nation, and I hope that no one is unable to see that today, the world and our nation is in a fragile state. At some point, hopefully before tragedy strikes again, we will be together so we can become the heroes that have made this is a wonderful nation: the most democratic, healthiest, smartest, richest and most powerful one in our entire world’s history. We are not ready to give up that place yet. This is not the best possible time for it but more importantly: There is no other country prepared to take that place.

Settling of a reality

 By Isis Win

Ending another year prompts reflection. Perhaps when it comes to our personal reflection the process seems, “Smooth and easy” to attain but when it comes to issues of our country and world, things may become complex and incomprehensible.

The reasons are quite obvious but offer no explanations as how we arrived to where we are. For starters the media does not make it any easier but as well, not always represents the truth. Propaganda and manipulation often make the headlines and we are left thinking what is not. In most cases, all depends on what the medium in place is. However, many of those issues foreign to our inner world affect everything including our personal and close world.

The political scene is no exception and as we know, such alters many other realms that ultimately affect us personally.  Here I am doing a quick revision about some of those issues that have resulted in apathy, vitriolic reasoning and divided further the American people. All resulting in one of the worse cases in the American peopleʻs lack of confidence.  However, it is clear that no one fully agrees in many of those points of issue and their true representation.  Nevertheless, with some distance, the truth shines for itself, showing the facts as they truly are. Here are some at the top of the list.

Through the entire twenty-first century we’ve been encountering a not-so-familiar panorama in the US, starting with the unprovoked attack on the WTC, an event that shocked and infuriated even the most cool and collected person. For some “strange” reason, if we could have removed our selves from what happened as it happened, we didn’t. We were emotional witnesses to this hard-to-believe painful tragedy. Some people mourned, while for others, their anger was triggered to the point of seeking revenge against the perpetrator.

I bounced back and forth between both, but always kept in view that a terrorist faction is not a country. They have no official home and they can be spread around the world. How scary! Almost like in the bloody seventeenth century when many religion wars were fought. Therefore, fighting them seemed close to impossible. Those that were obsessed by that core anger wanted to take matters in their hands. As a consequence, flocks of young people joined the armed forces. Young patriotic people who were willing to sacrifice their lives to defend our sovereignty and freedom. People whose values rank at the highest level of caring for their nation and people, something to be much more than admired. But sadly, even the armed forces have failed them from beginning to end.

Through those same times, we were consumed as well by a previous enemy of the USA and a threat to the world: Saddam Hussein. Hussein already was an icon in our minds when he invaded and stole the vaults of Kuwait and was flawlessly ousted out of Kuwait by the US forces. The US demolished his arsenal, leaving him totally unprotected in one of the most dangerous and unstable regions of the world, a region that constantly has been at war since the beginning of history.

It was well-known that Hussein possessed chemical weapons and was fully capable of using them, and as well, US intelligence suspected a large arsenal that could be used against the US as retaliation, and the existence of production plants. There even was speculation that he was preparing to possess nuclear weapons although the UN stepped in and established there were not suspected weapons, nor plants. Saddam was no threat to anyone. As well, US intelligence assured the White House that Hussein had business with Al-Qaeda and Osama Bin Laden and was involved in the WTC attack.

Then, the US went to a preemptive assault on Iraq, a war that then-President Bush promised to the American people “will be a short one and a definite win” without any problem. History showed that not being the case at all, but as well, the presumed US intelligence was wrong. Way wrong! Hussein was not a threat nor was part of any act of terrorism against the US or any allied country. However, we engaged into a war that cost several thousands of life lost, and severely physically damaged many folds more of soldiers. The cost of this war was way beyond what the country could afford – especially when we were enjoying tax cuts across the board. But like if that wasn’t enough pain to the country and to the American people, the post-invasion effort was a total flop. The only winners in this war had been all the humongous businesses that garnered multi-billion contracts to support the troops, do the clean up, and saw to the return of Iraq, such as Halliburton. As well, we faced the true problem behind the 9/11 attack: Afghanistan. Our troops went there to kill all Al Qaeda operatives and their top rulers. It was another flop, although several of the people responsible for the attack had been detained and others killed, including Osama bin Laden.

We learned that what Bush said in regard to Iraq and Saddam was completely false, and his team made sure to point the finger at faulty intelligence, but not him. Bush simply washed his hands of any responsibility. To the public opinion, he just retaliated against the culprits of 9/11, and that sufficed to most. However, we now know that there was evidence of manipulations within the government agencies, and consequentially around that time, Secretary of State Colin Powell renounced his position, leaving politics for good. We will never know what the truth is. It has been said over and over that the attack to Iraq was planned before 9/11.

Nevertheless, we engaged in two war fronts, lost too many lives, and more, although Bush assured us to the contrary. We left Iraq a total mess, and Afghanistan is far from reaching an end. The cost of both wars amounts several billions of dollars, although we’ll never know if the actual cost of the wars on Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq is close to 4 trillion dollars as stated by the press.

But the previous administration left us one more chaos. Although analysts, academics and several legislators warned the White House about the dangerous housing and mortgage balloon, the White House did nothing. It burst, leaving us in the second-worst recession in history. Frankly, after all I’ve read about the depression of the 30s, I believe what we’ve dealt with is a true depression. However, it never reached that level because the White House stepped in and saved most of the banks.

This created another breed of winners: bankers and their top men, including those that illegally traded many corrupted loans. Bottom line, the Republicans left the country and the American people in dire straights. We lived through almost an entire decade while watching the most powerful White House in the history of the US deceiving the American people, selling the country to China, creating a war that was not justified by any means, and violating the Freedom Act with the Patriot Act, and all in the name of justice. But justice to who? Although most Americans agreed with bringing to justice all responsible for the attack, no one agreed to the results of the flawed management to achieve that purpose. So far Al-Qaeda has cost the US almost 10,000 lives and a fortune we cannot afford.

It wasn’t surprising to see Bush winning a second term. Although I forecast many years ago Kerry being president due to his remarkable political career, his campaign was too poor and the fact was that he is part of the American aristocracy, even if just by marriage. I knew all that would be a heavy price for him. Bush won and we were set on course to tragedy. The silver spoon-born rancher got a second term. The saddest part is – learning about Bush’s grim past. Although a college graduate, he is an ignorant, not presidential caliber at all.
Bush has not even traveled overseas ever! And he became a president? As well, all his previous “professional” positions were a total flop. Not even being governor of Texas created sound credentials, well, despite the grand fact that he came from a family with a long history in American politics.

Then, elections came again, and with the American people already fed up with the terrible and failed Republican policies of Bush, the Democrats rose into power. I remember so clearly when Governor Obama delivered that phenomenal speech at the Democratic Convention at Kerry’s nomination, I was awed and deeply impressed by it. I told my wife right away, “Here we have a presidential Democrat.” My wife dismissed my comment simply because in her eyes, America was not ready for an African-American president. I had doubts too. However, I believed that the principles of his speech were exactly what the American people wanted and needed: to return to the known American principles of social justice and a growing economic power to all. But that panorama was too far from reality, considering all of above.

Obama became the choice of the American people. Personally, I favored Obama simply because McCain was not promising throughout his campaign at all, particularly after he selected bimbo Palin as his running partner. It was clear that either he wanted absolute power by choosing her or he felt the election was in his pocket anyway. I took offense at his poor choice. “Why Palin?”, I wondered. Because she is an eloquent loose canon? Because she is very attractive? Or because she is quite poisoned against moderate or liberal policies?

My question was answered once the Tea Party started to take over the Republican platform. All that is about is vitriol and nothing about policies or real patriotism, not even American dreams. Opposition to abortion, illegal immigrants, gun control and antagonism against gay rights became their platform and nothing about American policy nor the well-being of the American people. It was about removing from the American tapestry anyone that wasn’t approved by them.  Like that defines our nation! Clearly, as well, greed known among republicans is part of their song.

However, it is my impression that in reality, McCain gave away his presidential dreams due to the recent disaster of the financial meltdown. In fact, I don’t doubt the possibility that the Republican party gave away the election to let the Democrats deal with the existing crisis and then win the following period. Fixing the depression wouldn’t be possible in the next four years, but it is more promising during the next period. We must remember at all times that in politics, anything can happen. And if so, the Republicans had made a great performance presenting a view of Obama and the Republican Party that would assure them the White House in 2012.

I can only hope that the American people have a better vision than going by the Republican propaganda and the blocked attempts to address our current situation. If the White House ends up Republican in 2012, we must be prepared to manage a worse war than the one against Al-Qaeda, because the American people have left behind for far too long the worst scenario for the American people in the last 100 years. Frankly, I believe that the majority voters are not willing to deal with the Republicans, at least in 2012.

The American voters are after justice, fairness and equal distribution. Obama promised not only that, but a total change of the political landscape. A red flag in my view. He was committing to too much and on top of that he was to going to bridge differences between Republicans and Democrats? I wondered how could he do that? That definitely would represent a major change! However, I knew as well that the fact that he is of African descent could bring as well another can of worms for him and the Democrats. Of course, no one wants to publicly admit that, but for four years I’ve heard too many Republicans and Democrats whining about that fact. In 2008, I didn’t care myself because my eyes don’t suffer from those ethnic filters. As well, I knew what the nation needed was someone who wanted to achieve a place in history that confirmed what this nation is supposed to be about. If we could have another Lincoln or Jefferson, that would be it! How naïve of me, because I disregarded the fact that the opposition would make sure he failed in any attempt to bring any of those promised changes. All that because he is a Democrat, he promised too much, he believed in the ability to fully change the nation and because he is black. It seems I was right, but that doesn’t remove the sadness I experienced because, in my book, everything should be about the bettering of the country and everyone in it.

Now we’ve witnessed for a few months the front-runners for the official Republican candidacy throwing dirt at each other and many folds more to Obama. At the early stage of the debates, I was somehow excited about it. Now, I am so disappointed and just as frustrated. Between all the candidates, the Republican party lacks of any true presidential caliber candidate. Flip flopping, ignorance, deception and a hidden agenda are out in the light, even to the politically blind. Not even extracting the best of each candidate can we create one candidate that is sound and promising. On the other side, we still have Obama who, according to the Tea Party and the running candidates, is nothing close to presidential caliber and is a total fraud. If that were to be true, we are in a humongous jam because what the American people need is even a tiny bit of confidence in our future and a change of social and economic structure, something the Republicans openly are against. This is the reason the Occupy movement was born.

Although it seems that Occupy has awakened consciousness along the Main Streets, I see no signs of participation in numbers, something that is vital and badly needed. Perhaps everyone is too busy doing Christmas shopping or too depressed to say anything? It is another layer to the apathy I see. But I don’t blame anyone for it. It would be useless to do so. We cannot change our deficit, unemployment, nor the animosity of the Arab world towards us, or the divisive mentality in politics.  We are hopeless!

I know as well that most of the people unaffected by the recession not only don’t really care about what’s going on in the country or the people, and they have an opinion that differs so much from  reality. Dentists can afford looking at the eye of the customer and say: “Well, I have a plan for your dental care. It will take a few visits and your cost will only be $5,000!” Not to mention a visit to the Doctor, who in the long run, will only write another prescription to be filled and enrich the already-billionaire bio-chemical industries. God forbid that you need a lawyer that will charge you $300 for that letter he sent in your behalf! Nor go back to the gas prices of the early 2000s. But instead, we can buy a large screen TV, an iPad, or a car in payments so it provides some sense to living! And that while a small group of new millionaires and billionaires take their monies to foreign banks, can afford multiple mega-million homes, have their own jet, a fabulous yacht in an exotic place and pay almost no taxes!

Only the blind cannot see what’s truly happening to the world and our country, but, since they are blind, they will not read my blog. But way high in the aristocratic ladder, I can point to all those politicians who are not only out of touch with what the nation needs, but are clueless about what the American people want. Why would they care? Especially if they can enjoy a million dollar revolving account at Tiffany’s, or live in a $1,000,000+ home, while others are just concerned about putting a turkey on the Christmas dinner table or even worse, having a warm roof over their heads. In case you are not aware, poverty levels have grown as bad as our deficit.

If the country needs something, it is to put an end to negativity, to halt the bashing of those who are not approved by others, to – pitch in – where and when possible, and to insure the well-being of every single law-abiding citizen. We need to open our minds, eyes and hearts! Every single American matters as much as you do! After all, the well-being of others, is reflected in our own lives because our lives, are the fabric of America. Diversity has been one of the greatest blessings of the USA; therefore, every single individual should count, regardless of how different we might be or of our personal preferences. Therefore, everyone must be entitled to the exact same rights and opportunities. It is great for corporate America that has achieved the wold’s greatest place, but that place should not be exclusive to them, nor exclude anyone.

God Bless America and each of us!

The Failure of the Super Committee


By Isis Win

Here we are again facing another failed budget negotiation between the two parties. Another tremendous failure – even if a measure is passed. No party will claim a win, which seems that is the number one agenda. That instead of acting in favor of the country, the American people and the electors that put the Super Committee in power. The question the press has been pounding now, over and over is: should the members of the Super Committee be reelected? The logical, sensible and sensitive answer is a plain NO! But what party are we talking about? Right hands will answer get out the democrats! But on the opposite end, the answer will be, send the republicans back home.

Once again, I don’t care of believe what flag one party or the other one wears. Whether moderate, left or right, republican or democrat, all of them flip – flop with their claimed mentality or ideology and much more when it comes to vote for a bill. Issues and the answers that fix them is my train of thought. However, in this case, as many of the recent ones, I find that republicans are throwing a fit for the sake of insuring reelection. No taxes is their ticket, they think . . . but only an idiot will believe that such is what is needed to address all the complex issues we are facing. The irony of the case is that every single person against any increase in taxes, will state that such will counter work hiring. Hello? If I am a business owner (which I was and am not any longer and guess why?) All I will have to do to compensate for having higher taxes, is to make absolutely sure that my goods or services, will be competitive to the fierce market. A market that is eager, willing and capable of sacrificing something for the sake of staying in business. Even if my taxes are increased (nope, I don’t even make 250K), which I hate the idea, will be totally acceptable because I know well, we are in dire need of fixing many things, among them our deficit and debt. If I would be a million plus earner would be the same. After all, the worse it could do, is to slightly change my lifestyle but just for a time being. Once the country finds a balanced sheet, businesses will go as they were previous to the Bush administration when just about everything was booming quite well. So, yes to taxes! Unless people want to have the cake and eat it. In order to get all we need and want, we have no other choice but to pay for it’s cost. Frankly, I believe a strong and healthy nation offers much better possibilities, even if I am not having the greatest income I wish. The way our country is, there is no true winner. Perhaps only those that have hefty accounts overseas are winners regardless of higher taxes or not. They will remain as rich as they are today.

Cutting benefits to those who are retired and depend on those social services, services that they pay for and work their ass for them; simply is unacceptable. And cutting The Defense Department budget? On who’s mind can that be a positive move? Today when the political and social unrest in the world threatens all nations of the world? If you need a new prescription for your glasses today, don’t wait any longer because the known threats around the world are far worse than they were when the cold war. Perhaps the main difference is that there is no super power threatening us, but what about several nations together? Something that can happen at any moment since the Arab world is much more than unhappy with the US and such will not change while having a strong presence in the region. Soooo is the alternative to move out of the region for the sake of saving tons of dollars and allow the Arabs to become happy? No! Having arm forces that cost multi billion dollars every year is not my wish at all. But the US has taken a role that cannot be withdrawn just like that. Therefore we have no choice but to keep balance, as much as we can – around the world. Perhaps awaken the world to realize that for as long as we remain focused on the “well being” of other nations, instead of their own, we’ll remain screwed. Perhaps Aldous Huxley was much more than a visionary and what we need to do is to have a single country with a single government to rule the entire world. Forgive me for this fantasy but frankly I believe there are much more important issues and agendas on sight. Such as we must watch more closely what our planet is telling us before it is too late.

The worse of this failure is the fact that people’s confidence has been undermined once again and now for more than a decade! And if we don’t change this soon, who knows where we are going to land. No wonder crime has been growing across the planet in disproportional numbers and no country has a good hand to control it. Basically between the people’s division that we see in almost every country in the world for one reason or the other one and the political struggles, are destroying the order that almost every single person wishes to keep. But not many are doing something about it but to complain that they are suffering and also have needs. So is the rest of the world! But we, the US still are in a privileged place that at some point will no longer be and then, what are we going to do? Blame Obama? Or the Republican party or the Democrats?

Perhaps the only people worth any consideration today are our troops overseas and every single person that is Occupying a place to demand a the dialog that politicians are refusing to withhold. Even between their own selves. What a shame!