Monday, June 30, 2008
Sunday, June 29, 2008
As a young boy, I spent World War II in Berlin. Of course, I have many very terrible memories which, thank God, have faded more in intensity in the pursuant decades than have the really beautiful memories of the Berlin airlift by the Americans and the Allied forces. West Berlin, so very hungry and cold, was saved by the airlift from falling into the arms of Soviet annexation into the occupied zone in East Berlin.
The Soviets had, after the foundation of a West German state became obvious, categorically cordoned off West Berlin and seized the electric supply. All transports from and to West Berlin through the zone surrounding Berlin came to a halt and the two million people there faced catastrophe. Supply structures were still nonexistent 3 years after the end of the war, so Berlin was dependent on the daily supply of all life-necessary materials, not only food but also heating materials and fuel for the electricity power plants.
What happened within the population after the Soviet Blockade can barely be described. Many Berliners saw only a choice between “pest and cholera” as we say in German: it was either go down or to give up to the Russians. The blockade began in 1948 and West Berlin became a little island embraced by the Russian area of influence and control. Stalin was on the verge of letting two million people die from hunger.
My father, as a former lieutenant of the armed forces, had not yet come back from a Russian prison camp so it was up to my mother to figure out how she would bring her children through all by herself. Suddenly, unexpected relief came and it came from people who Adolph Hitler had declared our enemies: The Americans and the British. In an ingenious and forward-looking humane decision, the United States administration began to bring West Berlin much needed supplies through the air! The Brits went along with this action and the French, too, agreed to it but their military engagement in Indochina kept them from very actively participating.
On June 26, 1948, the first aircraft took off from Frankfurt and brought supply goods to Berlin. We Berliners could only be amazed and felt such deep thankfulness not only for the necessary help but also for the sign of a democratic new start for us and a return to feeling like one of a family of countries, something the Americans showed us through this wonderful action.
Also, we as children sensed the city starting to breathe again. We followed with gratefulness each announcement of the astonishing performances which our former “enemies” did for us. This was the birth hour of the German/American friendship and partnership which, despite all prophecies of gloom which always come from the same political side of both our countries, has achieved an unbreakable status.
Unforgotten by the Germans of my generation is General Lucius D. Clay, who stood by us for many years through his presence and his effective aid management. Also unforgotten remain the more than 20,000 men of the US Air Force and their comrades in the Royal British Air Force who tirelessly flew, day and night and WITHOUT PAUSE, in a 3 minute cycle with 300 aircraft, supplying West Berlin for 15 months! These aircraft didn’t just fly one after the other but in 3 elevations at the same time. There were air corridors for incoming and outgoing flights. This was a logistical master performance, particularly for the conditions at that time. Almost 2.5 million tons of freight and 225,000 passengers were transported in those 15 months. So very regrettably, many pilots lost their lives in flight accidents during that time.
These are some of the impressive facts which I came to understand only many years later. For me as a small boy of 10 years, something else will remain unextinguishable in my memory: “Operation Little Vittles”. This began through a letter written by a little girl in Berlin, Mercedes, who lived in the airplane approach path of Tempelhof Airport .
The letter was directed to the pilots (“Chocolate Uncles”) who flew in low altitudes above her. In her letter, she told them that next time they should drop some candies! “…there, where you see the white hens in the garden, this is where I live and this is where I’d like you to drop the sweets, bitte!”
This little girl’s request reached Colonel Gail S. Halvorsen, who immediately took charge of this task and who constructed little parachutes by which he could start dropping sweets. Rapidly, other pilots also started to do this and what they initiated was incredible. Large numbers of children gathered in the flight path, stood on the rubble of bombed houses, and waited for chocolate and chewing gum. Gail had let the children know that he would wiggle his wings when he came before he made the drop of the rain of candy! We who were born during that time had no knowledge of sweets until the airlifts! No one who wasn’t there could imagine what that meant to us. After that started, these aircraft were called “Raisin Bombers” (raisin is a synonym for sweets in German). “Operation Little Vittles” had an enormous effect and triggered an enormous wave of desire and willingness by the Americans at home to help us children. They collected gifts and sweets which were now also dropped by pilots in other areas of the city. In addition, the children in hospitals were supplied. One US official later said: “This self-initiated act of kindness became the humanitarian heart that kept the air crews going, fueled the hope of all Berliners, and set the mold for all future humanitarian airlifts.”
Gail Halvorsen is now eighty-seven years old but as “lively as tennis shoes”, another German expression, and he was one of the honored guests at the 60 year commemoration festivities in Frankfurt. Of course, he also met Mercedes, the little girl with the white hens!
I had fourteen years to go before I could go to America for the first time. I stood on the Empire State Building, looked down at the city, and wanted to embrace every American. Thank you for your spirit and for being such an incredible role model of aid and friendship.
Mr. Klaus Lewin
"He hasn't been there and ordered the bombs to fall," Clark said on "Face the Nation" on CBS.
When moderator Bob Schieffer noted that Obama hadn't had those experiences nor had he ridden in a fighter plane and been shot down, Clark replied: "Well, I don't think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be president."
Saturday, June 28, 2008
PHOTO COMPLIMENTS OF DIE WELT
Friday, June 27, 2008
"Sen. Barack Obama, perhaps giving America a preview of priorities he would pursue if elected prsident, is rejoicing over the Senate committee passage of a plan that could end up costing taxpayers billions of dollars in an attempt to reduce poverty in other nations."
If you can eat scotch bonnet peppers, read the whole article. And, remember........
You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
WHY can't our Left SEE THAT? WHY? Is it SO important to them that America flounders?
UPDATE: I just watched Hillary glowingly introduce Obama .... Obama said "We want to deliver the AMERICAN DREAM to every corner of this country" He forgot to mention his apparent dream of bringing OUR DREAM to ".. every poor country in the world."
Thursday, June 26, 2008
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
You cannot lift the wage earner up by pulling the wage payer down.
You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.
You cannot build character and courage by taking away men's initiative and independence.
You cannot help men permanently by doing for them, what they could and should do for themselves.
Since we make him do everything....................You think we can make him NOT RUN?!!
thanks to WV Dottr for the tip!
One week later, following the State of the Union address, the two senators found themselves doing a back-to-back interview on CNN. Mr. Obama went first, with Mrs. Clinton pacing a few feet away. Finally, an aide escorted her completely around the rotunda of the Russell Senate Office Building, avoiding walking directly by Mr. Obama."
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Spanish parliament to extend rights to apes
Wed Jun 25, 2008 4:27pm EDT By Martin Roberts
MADRID (Reuters) - Spain's parliament voiced its support on Wednesday for the rights of great apes to life and freedom in what will apparently be the first time any national legislature has called for such rights for non-humans.
Parliament's environmental committee approved resolutions urging Spain to comply with the Great Apes Project, devised by scientists and philosophers who say our closest genetic relatives deserve rights hitherto limited to humans.
Rights of HUMANS? They're getting OUR rights because they're our 'closest genetic relatives'? I like animals as much as the next person, but..........what message... isn't this a pretty darned slippery slope? (and we have one foot on a banana peel, so to speak!!!)
"This is a historic day in the struggle for animal rights and in defense of our evolutionary comrades, which will doubtless go down in the history of humanity," said Pedro Pozas, Spanish director of the Great Apes Project.
"OUR evolutionary COMRADES?" WHAT?
Spain may be better known abroad for bull-fighting than animal rights but the new measures are the latest move turning once-conservative Spain into a liberal trailblazer.
Spain did not legalize divorce until the 1980s, but Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero's Socialist government has legalized gay marriage, reduced the influence of the Catholic Church in education and set up an Equality Ministry.
Oh, I SEE....Spain was in the dark ages not legalizing gay marriage and allowing the church any say in the education and not having an EQUALITY MINISTRY! Why not legalize humans marrying one of those cute apes? After all...we're COUSINS, no?
Keeping an estimated 315 apes in Spanish zoos will not be illegal, but supporters of the bill say conditions will need to improve drastically in 70 percent of establishments to comply with the new law.
Pretty soon, they'll be taking the apes to Gitmo for really improved conditions!
Philosophers Peter Singer and Paola Cavalieri founded the Great Ape Project in 1993, arguing that "non-human hominids" like chimpanzees, gorillas, orang-utans and bonobos should enjoy the right to life, freedom and not to be tortured.
WHY do APES have a 'right to life' in this "liberal trailblazing" country now and our unborn babies don't!? You'd think there IS no other way to look at evolution, gay marriage or anything else, huh? Reuters...typical. I'm looking for another world to live in...got any suggestions?
thanks for the tip. FT
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
As some of you know, Mr and Mrs Z lived in Paris for four years....We lived there through Y2K and lived to tell it; we lived through 9/11 and were just glad to have lived, and we lived through the advent of the Euro. I wrote this 6 days after the new Euro first showed up.......Read about how the people handled it...we had some great times!
January 7, 2002
The Euro and our Café
As an American living in France, the Euro isn’t a huge disruption in my life, it’s worth just a bit less than our American dollar, so it works for me! There’s some romance gone from France with the disappearance of the francs, and sure, I’d just learned to pronounce the nasal “n” in “francs”, but nobody asked me. The best part is no more dividing everything by seven to go from French francs to its worth in dollars. My husband keeps reminding me his salary isn’t paid in dollars so the value in dollars doesn’t really apply to us but it matters to me; without an American dollar value in my head, everything might as well have been paid for with old E Ride tickets from Disneyland.
The problem is, since the demise of the francs, everything suddenly seems much more expensive. Had we been paying $12.00 for cold chicken and $4.00 for a cup of mint tea at the cafe all along? Maybe I was worse at dividing by seven than I thought. Today, I had my very last hot mint tea in a restaurant in France. Four DOLLARS for a teabag and some hot water? Gone are the days when I figured anything worth a seventh of what it said on the menu was cheap. The Euro’s close to the dollars, so I’m not confused anymore. But the waiters at my local café are.
The Euro came into use on January 1st. We were in our local bistro for our morning coffee January 2nd. Much had changed. Jean Paul, Mayda, Jean Claude, Brigitte, and the two waiters behind the counter, weren’t smiling as the usually do. Yes, we heard “Bonjour!”, but it didn’t have the bounce in it this time. They were not as busy as usual that morning as the French hadn’t returned from their ski trips and the reduction in the number of American tourists was most greatly noticed over the holidays, but the wait staff at the café was otherwise occupied. It was the Euro.
Until February 17th, the French can still take francs, but most are giving Euros in change. I say “most” because our other corner restaurant is giving back francs, whether it’s legal or not doesn’t seem to bother them or the authorities, which is nothing new for Paris. Our favorite Le Victor Hugo café is giving change in Euros for francs, and the wait staff is not happy. Suddenly, along with balancing little trays with four dollar mint tea on them, they’re also carrying tiny calculators, clutching them like a paycheck, like if it weren’t for that thing in their hand, they might as well have not come in.
Jean Paul, who usually discos himself around the café greeting strangers and good customers with almost the same verve (frequent customers like us get kisses and compliments with our greetings!), was suddenly not even smiling. He took one look at us, pointed to his calculator and said the whole thing was OVERBOARD! JUST too much!. Mayda looked tired for the first time, and Jean Claude was having enough difficulties managing his hangover without having to worry about making change, too.
Jean Claude started working at Le Victor six months ago. It was positively startling to have a new waiter at our local, having become used to the same people over 2 ½ years, rather like suddenly finding an extra brother one morning at the breakfast table. It didn’t take long for us to warm to him, all we had to do was see his way of giving change which, when he first came, was still in francs. You see, Jean Claude wears the obligatory long sleeved white shirt, black vest, black bow tie, and black pants, but it’s his vest that’s the best part. Jean Claude’s vest has several long horizontal pockets across the front, around his belly. The first day my husband paid him for our coffees and croissants, he took the money and suddenly his fingers started flying across his vest, bringing out coins from his pockets in rapid succession….some coins from one, another coin from around the other side. We watched and realized that each pocket had different values of francs in it, ten francs coins in one pocket, ½ franc in another. And he managed this pulling at his vest quicker than one could manage one of those metal change boxes that we have in the States where you push the top of each section and the coin comes down. The man played his vest like someone playing an accordion. He knew exactly what each pocket had without a downward glance. Well, with the change to Euro, Jean Claude still wears his vest, but it’s not the same. At first, I saw him grab for a coin then immediately grab a coin from another pocket and check them against each other for size. They’re very close in size and many values are the same color, so it’s hard to tell. Today, I noticed Jean Claude’s wearing his glasses all the time. Now he needs only to look carefully at the number written on them. Things are different.
That first day of the Euro was the first day I’d say that staff looked stressed. There have been days when the place is so full you can barely walk through, when Mayda walks up the steps to the second level seating area carrying three hot dishes and still smiling brightly as usual. I’ve been there when Jean Paul had a table full of foreigners who’d left their smiles at home, and still Jean Paul, though teasing us about them from behind a column, mimicking their long faces and refusal to fall for his charms, remained full of laughter and good humor. But, not the day the Euro hit.
“Look, Madame Star!” (that’s his moniker for me because I wear dark glasses, and who would protest that name?), “Look at these awful things,” he said, holding out a handful of coins, affording me my first look at a bunch of them all together in one place. “This is terrible, it’s too difficult. And it’s not French!” Not to mention it looked less like real money and more like the shiny, foil-covered chocolate candies the French give their children at Christmas, I wanted to add, but my French doesn’t go that far.
The rest of the time that morning, while we sipped our coffee, one or the other of the staff would stop at our table between duties and bemoan the Euro all over again, holding the calculator up in the air and shaking it, making faces, or simply rolling their eyes as they walked by.
It’s been a week now since the Euro befell the European Union and the press says all has gone superbly well. I’d say it’s been less superb at our neighborhood café, but it’s getting better. We were there for lunch today. Other than the fact that you can see them squinting to see which value coin they’re giving you back, and they’re still huddling together in little meetings about what the change for a client comes to, they’re getting used to it. Jean Paul was almost back to dancing himself through the cafe today and, in a week, Jean Claude will have memorized his vest.
As for me, I’d say it’s the first time in my life I’d have rather continued to divide by seven. At least then, I may never have awakened to the fact that I was paying four dollars and change for a cup of tea.
'Tim and Jim Jones.'
'Jones? Are you related? I see a resemblance.'
'Yes, we're brothers.'
'Brothers? You can't get married.'
'Why not? Aren't you giving marriage licenses to same gender couples?'
'Yes, thousands. But we haven't had any siblings. That's incest!'
'Incest?' No, we are not gay.'
'Not gay? Then why do you want to get married?'
'For the financial benefits, of course. And we do love each other. Besides, we don't have any other prospects.'
'But we're issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples who've been denied equal protection under the law. If you are not gay, you can get married to a woman.'
'Wait a minute. A gay man has the same right to marry a woman as I have. But just because I'm straight doesn't mean I want to marry a woman. I want to marry Jim.'
'And I want to marry Tim, Are you going to discriminate against us just because we are not gay?'
'All right, all right. I'll give you your license. Next.'
'Hi. We are here to get married.'
'John Smith, Jane James, Robert Green, and June Johnson.'
'Who wants to marry whom?'
'We all want to marry each other.'
'But there are four of you!'
'That's right. You see, we're all bisexual. I love Jane and Robert, Jane loves me and June, June loves Robert and Jane, and Robert loves June and me. All of us getting married together is the only way that we can express our sexual preferences in a marital relationship.'
'But we've only been granting licenses to gay and lesbian couples.'
'So you're discriminating against bisexuals!'
'No, it's just that, well, the traditional idea of marriage is that it's just for couples.'
'Since when are you standing on tradition?'
'Well, I mean, you have to draw the line somewhere.'
'Who says? There's no logical reason to limit marriage to couples. The more the better. Besides, we demand our rights! The mayor says the constitution guarantees equal protection under the law. Give us a marriage license!'
'All right, all right. Next.'
'Hello, I'd like a marriage license.'
'In what names?'
'And the other man?'
'That's all. I want to marry myself.'
'Marry yourself? What do you mean?'
'Well, my psychiatrist says I have a dual personality, so I want to marry the two together. Maybe I can file a joint income-tax return.'
'That does it! I quit!! You people are making a mockery of marriage!!'
Monday, June 23, 2008
Sunday, June 22, 2008
Saturday, June 21, 2008
Start MARCHING, Conservative America!
How many of you over the last few years have complained about muslims not marching in demonstrations against the muslim extremists in this country and abroad? I sure have. I've whined and hidden behind that as a safe place to be......."there, I've said it, what else can I do?" Because, really, what else can I do?
We all, I think, feel there are muslims living in this country who don't mean us harm. Obviously, there are varying degrees of 'harm'. Some of us feel most muslims don't wish us violent muslim-provoked death in our own beds. But then you ask yourself how they can believe in a Koran which reminds muslims (and it does, don't let anybody lie and tell you otherwise) to kill the infidel who won't buy their brand of 'faith'. A poster at Frontpagemag.com, Abdullah, a Texas born ex-navy vet who's a muslim convert, had posted there for about a year before finally admitting he thought Shari'a Law would be a great thing for this country, this country which had educated him, this country in which he supposedly has made a fine living as a financial counselor, this country into which he brought an Indonesian muslim wife and in which he's raising his children. He's raising them in muslim schools, can we not conclude they're being taught Shari'a Law is best for America? Is that not harming our country? Sure it is, as sure as the terror cells in Des Moines and San Diego are plotting against us.
A new blogger, Karma, asks WHY ARE WE CONSERVATIVE WOMEN NOT DOING ANYTHING? Code Pink is out there, unashamed and unfettered... Where are the Conservatives? She's right. Men, too.....you're not off the hook!!
How can we blame muslims for not talking against the extremists if we're not talking against our extremists in meaningful, effective ways? Isn't it extreme to want socialism in a country built on capitalism? Is it not extreme for a senator to tell children their president's a liar? Isn't it extreme to be educating our kids to embrace Marxist notions? Isn't it extremist for a Supreme Court to rule for terrorists and not our safety? Isn't it extremist of Code Pink to continuously insult our soldiers and the goal SO many of them are proud to endorse and fight for? Isn't it extremist to have a media as dishonest and biased as most of ours is? Isn't it extremist for Google and Yahoo search engines to suddenly not link to conservative blogs and other information sources (their own version of the Fairness Doctrine but they don't need a vote to pass it and implement it)? Isn't it extremist for Christianity to be so slammed in every way when the country's 80% Christian? Isn't Al Gore extremist in scaring our children to death with dooms day idiocy and extremist to sign a Kyoto Agreement which could cripple us in so many ways? I could go on and on....so could you.
Isn't it extremist of US, we who share the traditional values of our founding fathers, we who'd do about anything to save America, to sit back and DO NOTHING in the face of all of this?
But, even some of my relatives think I AM EXTREMIST because I'm a registered Republican. They think I only vote Republican, that I don't think, that I watch 'too much FOX' when I watch everything, left and right, and they ONLY watch CNN and MSNBC!, that talk radio hosts are indoctrinating the sheep. This is what we have to fight, but the foothold is SO strong, it's everywhere, that I'm afraid it isn't going to work...or at least that it isn't going to be easy. And can we really do something IN TIME??
It's time now, folks..... What can we do? Are we going to just keep typing our indignant fingers to the bone on blogs and watch ourselves lose our country or are we REALLY going to stand up and insist that things change, that fairness is reinstalled, that Americans wake up?
HOW??! I personally have to begin by not cowering, by standing up and proudly saying I'm a Conservative (which ain't easy in West Los Angeles, TRUST me). I have to get educated enough myself, with quick sound bytes to most of the liberal accusations against Bush. I have to remind them McCain isn't Bush. I have to pretend I like McCAIN! I have to fight to not get Obama elected. I'm even finally going to start taking those "political caller" calls on my phone's display again...and start giving money again. Obama's people are...TONS of it. I have to pray.
Well..maybe this post is to myself........if that's all it is, I think it helped me. I hope it does you, too. Let's all start doing better. Always On Watch has a radio show! Listen to it, tout it. She's REALLY doing something!! All of us bloggers are really DOING SOMETHING, don't get me wrong..............but we have to do more. and quickly. We can't rag on muslims if we're not speaking out, too, right? Start marching, even if that means chatting with your neighbor about your viewpoints.
End of sermon. SAY HALLELUJIAH and AMEN!! thanks for reading this far. You're a pal!
Friday, June 20, 2008
*The OPEC minister has looked us in the eyes and said: "We are at war with you infidels and have been since the embargo of the 1970s. You are so arrogant you haven't even recognized it. You have more missiles, bombs and technology; so we are fighting with the best weapon we have and extracting on a net basis about $700,000,000,000 per year out of your economy.
We will destroy you! Death to the infidels! While I am here I would like to thank you for not developing your 250-300 year supply of oil shale and tar sands. We know if you did this, it would create millions of jobs for US citizens, expand your engineering capabilities and keep the wealth in the US instead of sending it to us to finance our war against you bastards. Thanks for limiting defense dept. purchases of oil from your neighbors to the north. We love it when you confuse your allies.
Thanks for over regulating every segment of your economy and thus delaying, by decades the development of alternate fuel technologies.Thanks for limiting drilling off your coasts, in Alaska and anywhere there is a bug, bird, fish or plant that might be inconvenienced. Better that your people suffer!
Glad to see our lobbying efforts have been so effective. Corn based ethanol. Praise Allah for this sham program! Perhaps you will destroy yourself from the inside with these types of policies! This is a gift from Allah, praise his name! We never would have thought of this one. This is better than when you pay your farmers NOT TO GROW FOOD!! Have them use more energy to create Less Energy and simultaneously drive food prices through the roof.
Thank you US Congress!And finally...we appreciate you letting us fleece you without end. You will be glad to know we have been accumulating shares in your banks, real estate, and publicly held companies. We also finance a good portion of your debt and now manipulate your markets....your currency and economy to our benefit.Thank you America...and you will...PRAISE ALLAH.
Working people frequently ask retired people what we do to make our days interesting.
Well, for example, the other day I went downtown to go to the News Stand for the Wall Street Journal so I could track my investments. I was only in there for about 5 minutes. When I came out, there was a cop writing out a parking ticket. I said to him, 'Come on, man, don't you have anything better to do than write a retired person a ticket? Why aren't you out chasing crooks or child molesters...that's out of your league, obviously !!!
He ignored me and continued writing the ticket. I called him a 'Nazi.' He glared at me and wrote another ticket for having worn tires.So I called him 'Barney Fife'.He finished the second ticket and put it on the windshield with the first. Then he wrote a third ticket. This went on for about 20 minutes. The more I abused him, the more tickets he wrote. Personally, I didn't care..... I came down town on the bus.
The car that he was putting the tickets on had a bumper sticker that said 'OBAMA in '08.' I try to have a little fun each day now that I'm retired. It's important to my health!Thanks, PLS! xxx
Thursday, June 19, 2008
EDUCATE yourself, for Goodness sake! Do you KNOW how many liberal Dems are confiding in me they can’t vote for the Democrat this year!?
I’d have never sent you this, and I hadn’t sent things in the past like this about Dems, in order to preserve our friendship.
God save our country, Obama is going to drive it into the dirt. Congratulations. You, Hezbollah, every socialist-indoctrinated college student, islamists, illegals, and the society we’ve made which feels entitled to government help is supporting your candidate. Must feel reassuring, huh? Congratulations.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
TOKYO (AFP) - Former US presidential contender Mike Huckabee urged his fellow Republicans on Wednesday not to denigrate Democrat Barack Obama, saying they should celebrate the historic moment of a black candidate.
Huckabee, who won the first nomination contest in Iowa on the back of support from evangelical Christians, said he hoped Republican John McCain would defeat Obama but urged his party to highlight policy differences and not race.
When asked if he thought he might be the VP nominee, he said "You can't accept an invitation to the prom until the football captain asks you. So I'm not going to go out and buy the outfit just yet," Huckabee said. Here's the whole article.
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Historically speaking there are understandable reasons for Jews voting Democrat. Entire books could be written about the subject so I'll just touch on one of the most important of Jewish cultural concepts, Tikkun Olam.
Those who fall into the 'improve' category will tend to view the Ten Commandments and the other moral laws of the TANAKH (Hebrew Bible) as highly personal in nature and directed at individuals. The improvers tend to give far more to charity and have higher moral standards. They willl never view such personality traits as dishonesty through a political lens. To these people the ends do not justify the means. People who fall into this category are routinely infuriated at the torrent of lies propogated by political leftists and populists of EITHER political party. They are very Conservative and vote Republican or Libertarian with few exceptions.
Those who fall into the 'perfect world' category are overwhelmingly Democrat because that's the political home of forced collectivism. The world CANNOT be perfected with so many unnruly individuals on the loose! That's the major reason so many of the early Marxists and Communists were Jews. Communism was a Utopian movement which demanded collective effort and sacrifice. For a people so horribly abused by centuries of massacres and anti-Semitism, Communism sounded like a fair deal. Finally, they had a vehicle through which to force Tikkun Olam. Many never took the time to notice that communism's basic tenents violated every one of the Ten Commandments. Uggh.
Now that we know a little about Tikkun Olam, let's move to Mona Charen's article about American Jews, the Democrat Party, and Obama. Mona wrote:
I understand that AIPAC is purportedly an organization of Americans--mainly American Jews--who look out for the best interests of Israel against the Arab interests in Washington. Mona's article screams out the question WHY DID THEY SOIL THEMSELVES OVER OBAMA WHEN HE'S THE LEAST FRIENDLY CANDIDATE TO ISREAL TO APPEAR ON THE NATIONAL SCENE IN DECADES?!
Rush Limbaugh explained it best when he said, "those organizations which aren't EXPLICITLY Conservative WILL BE liberal or leftist! Why? Because Liberalism is the easiest and most gutless choice available." Leftists dominate AIPAC just as they dominate any organization not explicitly Conservative. Leftists are always leftists first, and any other loyalty is relegated to a distant second place. This is why the AIPAC gathering roared for the anti-Semite Obama.
"Yet 61 percent of American Jews, according to a recent Gallup poll, prefer Obama to McCain. True, this is a drop from the 78 percent who voted for John Kerry in 2004, but it still qualifies as slightly deranged, under the circumstances."
I don't believe these figures for a minute. It's been my personal experience that polling "Jewish opinion" is a miserably flawed science. My old Rabbi, Rabbi Peres, once told me that as the former leader of one of the largest conservative congregations in our city he was NEVER asked for his political opinions, nor was he asked by a reporter or pollster for a phone list for his congregation. It occurs to me that this just MIGHT be a good method for polling Jewish political opinions! He went on to tell me that most of the Jewish reporters, teachers, and college professors attended the Reform Synagogues, which are liberal, and well...that's also a good way to get a list of Jews to call for opinions. Guess which way that'll skew? I have the sneaking suspicion that this is the lazy pollster's method for getting Jewish "opinion", and I'm not the only Jew who feels this way.
I'm not saying that polling Christian opinion is any easier, it's every bit as devilish to be accurate there. Imagine if you only polled Southern Baptists and called that Christian opinion? Or how about United Methodists? As it turns out it's far easier to get accurate polls on the sexes or distinct racial groups. The 17% shift was probably accurate, but the base figures are probably WAAAAAY off.
My guess is that Obama will get no more than 40% of the Jewish vote this election, and that will be his own fault. Sadly, John McCain will play almost no role in Jewish voting this election, he inspires no one. Barack's negatives on Israel, and his anti-Semitic ties will tell the story.
Monday, June 16, 2008
Applaud the people in the Midwest, they're not complaining and getting little for it....but more rain. Pray for them. This is a good news story about America's best, people who take charge of their own lives in the face of real devastation. Good job, DD2...and thanks.
Sunday, June 15, 2008
BRAVO, IRELAND! A short primer on the EU, if you're interested.........and an explanation for the applause to Ireland:
What is today the EUROPEAN UNION started out in the 1950’s as an economic association of six initial countries (France, Germany, Italy, Belgium, Netherlands and Luxemburg) which then became the European Economic Community (EEC). The objective was to foster economic cooperation between the partner countries by omitting import and export taxes. New countries joined the EEC and financial support for “poorer countries” by the “richer countries” was added to make this community a very beneficial association in that the domestic market became substantially larger than just that of each individual country. So far so good. It should have stopped there. But then, the EEC started to establish its own regulations and laws with the intent to grow into a full blown political union.
Two things started to happen: (1) The administrative apparatus grew completely out of proportion, and (2) an understanding by the bureaucrats in Brussels and the European parliament in Strasburg cemented into the working documents for the EU the fact that European laws and regulations trump national laws and regulations. The results have been (almost) unavoidable: The huge cost of this apparatus, huge inefficiencies (the jobs are staffed pro rata and not according to qualification, and in addition, it is a charity with veteran politicians who are “promoted” out of their own country), and almost complete loss of sovereignty for the individual countries.
The mountain of regulations from Brussels in all detailed aspects of life has become overwhelming in the EU. It cannot be that the bureaucrats in Brussels have the right to tell Bavarian beer brewers that they have no right to respect the “Reinheitsgebot”, a hundreds of years old Bavarian regulation forbidding other than natural substances in beer. It can also not be that a party losing a caseint the German Supreme Court then goes to a European court and they overrule the German court. It should also not happen that bureaucrats tell the German politicians how to handle the immigrant question. These are only three small examples of how the EU has invaded every little detail of the life of the people in the European Nations. And many of these things cannot be explained away anymore under the headline “For the common good”.
Several attempts have been made to establish a constitution for the community which, in the meantime, is called the European Union (EU). Attempts were made to hide the constitution from the individual inhabitants of the countries and to execute the approval process without asking the people. However, several countries put the constitution up for public vote. Three years ago, the people of France and the Netherlands voted against the constitution mainly for the reasons cited above; too much bureaucracy, too much influence on the daily life of individuals, and inefficiency against illegal immigration and the terror threat. The politicians of the EU member countries came up with a modified version (the “Lisbon” version), which got mostly ratified by the parliaments of the member countries as the people were not asked. However, Ireland’s constitution requires a public referendum. This referendum took place on 6/12/08, and the Irish people voted against it.
The official reaction ran the gamut from consternation to notions that the Irish “could leave the EU, at least temporarily”, and “the Irish are unthankful, because they benefited largely from the EU”. That is true, Ireland was a poor country when it joined the EEC, when the latter was still an Economic Community. What these people don’t say, however, is that the real success for the Irish came when they abandoned socialism and restructured their country to become conservative, with lower taxes and more economic freedom to the people and companies. The EU had nothing to do with that success. Today, Ireland is the second wealthiest country in the EU after Luxemburg.
The vote in Ireland was not against the economic part of the EU, it was against the follow-up process of bureaucratization and top-down regulations by unelected bureaucrats, together with an unsatisfactory security situation in Europe with a flow of illegal immigrants (EU country inhabitants don’t need passports when crossing from one country to another) and criminals into the EU which is completely neglected at the EU level, and which is basically taken out of the hands of the partner countries without replacing it by anything effective.
I am personally glad that the Irish refused the EU constitution. I was strongly for the EEC because of its substantial economic impact through the creation of a large domestic market, but I was critical about further steps because I know how organizations take on lives of their own. When I recognized what the impact of overarching regulations and laws combined with incompetence and inefficiency would be, resulting de facto in the loss of sovereignty, I became vehemently against the EU as a political union. It should have remained what it was: an economic union.
I know I am not alone in my opinion. I read an article in Die WELT very recently speculating about the result; I had never seen so many readers’ comments to any article in a German newspaper and, from the sample reading I took, 95%+ of the comments were against the constitution. It turned out that asking the people directly was a very valid reality check and, while I am not of the opinion that every political issue should be held up for a public vote, an issue of such importance as the constitution of the EU should absolutely run through a referendum.
There is hope. Sometimes, democracy still works. A big applause for the Irish, because they gave the European politicians what they deserve: A big slap into the face.
Dad loved a good chili size, spaghetti and meatballs, and beef stew, but they'd better have no garlic that he knows about or can taste. And not too much onion. The area of food was, perhaps, the only area my parents were diametrically different. I'm positive my mother never, ever even saw a chili size and, if she had, she would have added garlic to it and had raw chopped onions piled on top.
Most business people like to eat lunch out. Not Dad. He took the sports page reverantly out of the L.A. Times each morning, read the rest of the paper with a bowl of corn flakes, waffles, or fried eggs and bacon, kissed Mom, and left, briefcase, blueprints and sports page in hand. The sports page was saved for the hour at Clifton's cafeteria or the greasy spoon nearest one of the job sites he would be around at noon. Dad was a contractor, besieged by plumbing, electrical, drywall, lumber, and all the other disciplines' subcontractors all day, not to mention the client. His hour of food, Don Drysdale and Gale Goodrich was hallowed, and alone. It was to the cafeteria that he took me to one summer's day when I worked at his office while his secretary, Bee, was on vacation.
"Come on," he said, "I'll take you to lunch." I thought we'd go to the Golden Lantern, a place down Laurel Canyon Boulevard, dark inside, with good steaks and spaghetti, or the Shakey's next door, because I love pizza. Instead, we drove ten minutes to a surprise destination. All he would tell me was that it was "special."
It was. A very special cafeteria. At least the senior citizens getting out of the bus in front must have thought so. Dad and I lowered the average age to seventy when we walked in. I remember lots of rounded chrome chairs, chrome counters, red/orange patent leather upholstery, and a black and white tiled floor. I think there was a mural too, a large abstract of lime green, bright turquoise and orange cut glass. (and no, I am NOT that old! It was retro.......or, probably, it hadn't been redone in all those years!!!)
I knew Dad was giving up the sports page for me, so that cheered me up! To tell you the truth, I was so happy to have Dad all to myself, I would have smiled if he'd taken me over to the office hotplate and we'd shared a Cup o'Soup, if it had been invented yet.
I followed Dad and the chink-chink noise that came from his keys bouncing in his pocket, up to the counters full of green jello, cold rolls, bowls of mashed potatoes and gravy and salad plates covered with plastic, He got serious, filled with awe. "Today, the special is stuffed peppers. Mmmmmm, they're real good here, Z." He introduced me to the lady behind the peppers. "Or, you can have any of the things down there, like tuna casserole, that's not too bad, real good short ribs, or rice with creamed chicken on it." We both had the stuffed peppers. And they were pretty good. It certainly wasn't the best food I ever ate, but, in some ways, it was the best lunch I ever had.
The only slightly uncomfortable moments Mom and Dad ever showed us in their very happy marriage were over the dinner table! Mom would have prepared her terrific beef stew, large chunks of beef dredged in flour before they hit the pan, carrots, potatoes, and celery (about the only time I like it cooked). She served it with fluffy white Parker House Rolls which were delicious when you sopped them in the thick gravy the flour helped create in the hours the stew simmered. It even got more scrumptious when you had put a little bit of butter on the roll first. The uncomfortable moment came when Dad would smile, then look sheepish. "I had beef stew at the cafeteria today, too." He didn't really mind, I'm sure, but he had to tease her because she always got grouchy and complained when he said that, as if she’d given him the same thing for Christmas that somebody else had, the surprise was ruined! Of course, he always said that Mom's stew, short ribs or corned beef and cabbage were better, and they definitely were.
In their forty-four years of marriage, Mom got Dad to actually like eggplant, avocadoes, only if they were in guacamole, fish (only bass, halibut, salmon and sand dabs), a little garlic in some things, some spicy sauces, and caviar, which was quite a feat considering the fact that one of his favorite snacks from his childhood was a piece of Weber's white bread with catsup on it.
The last thing Dad had, around eleven o'clock on the morning he died, was an ice cream float, he loved vanilla or strawberry ice cream with 7-up. After we got back from the hospital.... without him...... my numb brain took in the empty glass at the coffee table where he'd last put it down, the dried foam from the mixture of seven-up and ice cream still filmy on the glass. I took out the straw and I have it still, these 14 years later.
So, though Dad did love food, he wasn't what some people call a gourmet. But I'll bet those people can't get nearly as excited over stuffed peppers, spaghetti, beef stew, or catsup on Weber's bread, as he could. That's a gift. One he gave to me. As much as I love to cook exotic or time consuming recipes, people laugh that my favorite types of food are spaghetti and meatballs or macaroni and cheese. I proudly carry that gift, one of so many more important ones I got from my Dad, but I’m a foodie and wanted to share this particular gift today, on Father’s Day. I cherish that gift almost as much as I cherish that blue and white striped straw from that final vanilla float.
Happy Father’s Day, Dad……I love you as much now as I ever did.
And HAPPY FATHER'S DAY to all you fathers out there. For you young ones, remember that everything you say to your kids and do with your kids will be remembered, even the things you wouldn't have thought, like green Jello at the cafeteria. Make them good.
Friday, June 13, 2008
How do YOU feel? ARE you probably not going to vote? Are you voting no matter HOW much you dislike most of McCain's platform? Do you agree with Mama McCain?