Monday, April 11, 2016

The Panama Papers: Victims of Offshore

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Obama on Government and Silicon Valley

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Weeks After His Recovery, Ebola Lurked in a Doctor’s Eye -

Ebola has become the virus that would not be defeated. As sad as this might sound, it is a good thing that doctors from the West contracted this disease, and as Dr. Croziers (albeit unfortunate) situation demonstrates, it is helping to refocus (we hope Dr Chan's WHO is paying attention) to the yet, persisting Ebola crises.

The real danger of the recent finding is the fact that since much of the quarantine imposed at the height of the outbreak has now been lifted, the virus has most likely spread even further, lurking as it mutates. The hope is that such mutation does not present an even more debilitating global health challenge than the most recent incarnation of a virus that refuses to be tamed.

To protect us all, we must work to protect the poor and underserved in the far away crevices and oft forgotten places in the world. Ebola is showing once again that our collective destiny is intertwined, either we like it or not.

Weeks After His Recovery, Ebola Lurked in a Doctor’s Eye -

Boehner on Baltimore Cops: ‘If These Charges Are True, It’s Outrageous

"Invest in Education and Job Training Programs" ~ These seems to be on top of every politician to do list, to address the problem in cities like Baltimore. But they all seem to have forgotten the "lost generation" of minorities (particularly black men) who, haven entered the "system" now have no way out.

They are deprived access to meaningful re-entry into society. Many who have the right education still have difficulty accessing jobs at the same level as their peers.

Education and Job training yes. Drug law reform yes, discrimination against felons who have paid their "debt to society" must stop, and what about all the thousands who have been incarcerated for non-violent crimes ~ expunge their records and give them a real second chance.

And yes, police reform laws must not be just be about body cams. The laws must protect citizens as much as it protects officers who risk their lives. Policing is about protection, not harassment, and  the laws must ensure that for the sake of all. 

Boehner on Baltimore Cops: ‘If These Charges Are True, It’s Outrageous’

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Tragedy at another place of worship

Many year ago, some will say aeons, long before we settled on labels that helps nothing but create lines of division, when a person takes the life of another, we call it murder.

When a person, takes up arm and goes on rampage of violence, and in the process takes the lives of many, we don't struggle with what to call them or what they have done. We know who they are and understand what they have done. We may not have clarity about their reasoning or state of mind. But their actions are clear. In civil society, we call murder, murder and a murderer is a criminal.

Those were light years ago. Long before we have discovered the profit in labels. Terrorism has become a feeder for war machine after the cold war tapered into a cold wimper. Racism became a way to guilt an entire race into the crime of committed by a crazy person.

In the last ten years, mass murder has become the norm. Sometimes we call the perpetrators terrorist, sometimes we call them racists, and other times we just call them crazy criminals. Unfortunately the reason for the classification is more political than moral, it is more opportunistic than rational.

A depraved young man went on a rampage on a college campus, killing tens of students and teachers. We called him a mad man turned criminal. He was part white.

A depraved physician-soldier turns his guns on the people he was supposed to be protecting, we call him terrorist. He was of Arabic stock and Muslim.

Another depraved young man walked into a theater with a machine gun and mowed down tens of theater goers, he too was just a criminal.

A crazy kid killed his mother, then took a gun and killed toddlers and their teachers at his alma mater, where his mother was also a teacher. He was white, so he was simply a depraved criminal.

A crazy man man went into a hindu place of worship and mows down several siks. He was a racist hate criminal. Because he was white.

A couple of confused your muslime boys decided to fight for Allah, as if their God is really so weak that "he" needs their help, and instead of seeing them for what they are, we call them terrorists.

And now another crazy young man has decided that his mission in life is to create another civil war, so he visits a place of worship and historical significance. Because all his victims are black and he is white, we called him racist and his crime an hate crime. Some "christian" leaders would not even let him labelled terrorist, less that "other" tag is used to paint them and other adherents to their faith with the broad brush of terrorism. That is reserved for the "Islamic- extremists".

We use labels to divide and hid behind our weaknesses and fear. But these are crimes. Committed by depraved individuals. Somethings under the direction of others. Always enabled by the easy access to weapons and munitions. But always criminal acts.

Terrorism, Racism, hate crime and other politically sounding tags blind us to the simplicity of this crimes. We seek deeper meaning, and find an excuse to create divisions where non should exist. Our conceit lead us into wasting trillions of dollars on ill-fated wars and attempted nation and ideology shaping experiments that are steeped in our own fears that we are indeed superior to some others.

But a crime is a crime, and its perpetrator is a criminal. Criminals should be treated as such regardless of their race, religion or purported ideological leanings. They should be tried, and if convicted punished for their crimes.

We should seek to find meaning and see if there is a root cause to these crimes, just the way we should weith any other crime. But, coloring our minds by classifying crimes based on the colors or ideology of the criminal has not worked for us in the last 50 year , and are not likely to work in the next 50.

Tagging criminals the way we do today only create divides within society. Muslims feel defensive because now all grouped along with some criminals who happen to be Muslims. Whites feel defensive because some depraved criminal is pained with a brush that purports more whites are complicit than just the criminal.

The tragedy in South Carolina hurts and socks our conscience. But it is no more or less sad than the tragedy that almost took the life of Gabby Gifford, or the one that took countless lives in Aurora, or the mindless killing by Major Hassan, or the depraved mowing of toddlers in Newport. They all are mindless acts of crime against innocents. Their perpetrators are depraved criminals with god complexes. But tagging these crimes as political, racial or ideological colors only elevate the criminal and take our focus away from the real crime. We celebrate these criminals when we elevate their crimes.

These senseless acts of violence have one thing in common. Guns! But guns don't kill, people do. However, we can make it less easy for would be criminals to feel empowered to mow then twenty-seven innocent children and their teacher on a quiet school day.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Saudi Sunnis and Iran's Shiites—Why the U.S. Can’t Support Both

Yeah, this make sense. 9/11 attack was funded, plotted and executed by Sunnis, mostly Saudi Sunnis. Most of the violent opposition to the US in Iraq was by Sunnis. The Afghanistan Talibans are Sunnis.

But, somehow, America must support Sunnis, but cannot work with Shiites?

The US works well with Mormons, Anglicans, Orthodox Christians, Baptists as well as Catholics. It can work with all comers, where there interest of the US aligns with the interest of the people or nation.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Afghan president says his nation won't be 'lazy Uncle Joe

Many Republicans and often even Democratic critics of President Obama often tout his lack of bromance with corrupt, inept and ungrateful Karzai as evidence of his "lack of leadership". They fail to admit the obvious, Obama is the President of the USA, and his duty is to first and foremost protect the interest of the USA, and not promote the ambition of some back-biting "ally". When America finds a reliable ally, they are the President's friend. When the "ally" is only self serving, or promotes their personal ambition, even at the expense of the interest of the USA, the President is obligated to treat such with the suspicion and caution their attitude calls for.

Ghani has so far, at least from all the optics, demonstrated gratitude for the generosity of the US tax payers and the sacrifice of Americans and other NATO members, and continues to demonstrate a resolve the fix Afghanistan's woes. Time will tell if he's on the right course and if he becomes the Afghan's Ford, Lincoln, FDR, and Truman combined. A leader that heals his people and helps them build a prosperous post war future.

Afghan president says his nation won't be 'lazy Uncle Joe'

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

WHO resisted declaring Ebola emergency | Toronto Star

I wonder why Dr. Chan still continues as the head of WHO after her  incompetence and inaction led to the needless death of thousands. If she was the health secretary of her native country, would she still retain her job after such a record?

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Buhari's calling

At the dawn of Nigerian independence in 1960, Muhammadu Buhari was a gangling teenager who eagerly joined the Nigerian Military Training College Kaduna, the go to school for smart, ambitious and often patriotic youths from Northern Nigeria. A two year stint at the later named Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) and Buhari was commissioned as a second lieutenant, at a time of major political upheaval, but also great opportunity for young military officers. Just a few short years later, the young 23 year old was named Commander of an infantry battalion, a position he held during the first and second military coups. 

Sunday, May 10, 2015

It sounds like Obama doesn't have any friends on the world stage

I wonder how much George Bush's famed "friendships" helped with his starting a war of choice in Iraq or getting bogged in Afghanistan, both of which ended up as quagmires that only his "unfriendly"   successor's dogged focus helped bring to an end.

Also, the premise that somehow, being chummy with incompetent, corrupt, politically inept and sectarian Al-Malaki or Kleptomaniac Khazai would have changed their minds. Obama has a vision for restoring America's place as a pre-eminent power - not one that is sidetracked by unnecessary conflicts in other lands, conflicts that almost bankrupted the nation, while it's true geo-political rivals outflanked it both economically, diplomatically, and increasingly militarily.

History will judge this president's foresight, his singular focus on the prize and his success in restoring America's faith in it's government (san the bomb throwing opposition) and the world's renewed acceptance of America's leadership.

It is easy to forget now, how much of the world treated America with disdain in 2007 and how the nation tottered at the edge of ruins then. It is morning yet in America, if only the rabid opposition will demonstrate some of their oft parroted patriotism.