Archive for the ‘Democracy and Freedom (or lack of)’ Category

America was shamed on Tuesday as we have never been shamed before. We were debased as a nation by the words of a president who stood before the world and defended the honor of Nazis. He reduced himself in an instant from alarming buffoon to dangerous villain. We who elected him stand disgraced, humiliated.

But in fact our shame doesn’t matter. Our feelings, our sense of honor as citizens and as a nation are a matter of emotional satisfaction, but they’re not a matter of urgent, worldwide concern. Not when we face a global crisis of our own making, the unveiling before the world’s eyes of the hollow moral core at the center of the man we have installed as the most powerful man on earth.

Last week we could explain away Donald Trump’s gaffes as misunderstandings, ignorance, clumsiness. No longer. Now we know for a certainty, from the mouth of the president himself at a moment of unbridled candor, that he is unable to tell right from wrong. To distinguish Nazis and Klansmen from their opponents. To understand the moral chasm dividing George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, authors of this nation and its evolving freedoms, from Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson, traitors who tried to destroy this nation in order to maintain the enslavement of millions. To understand that a mob marching under a forest of Nazi and Confederate flags, chanting “blood and soil” and “Jews will not replace us,” is not a mixture of “very bad” and “very fine” people. [Read more →]

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FDR started the Long Peace. Under Trump, it may be coming to an end.
By Fareed Zakaria, Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017

In his first days in office, President Trump has begun to reverse the domestic policies of the previous eight years. But with regard to the United States’ relations with the world, Trump seems far more radical. In word and deed, he appears to be walking away from the idea of America at the center of an open, rule-based international order. This would be a reversal of more than 70 years of U.S. foreign policy.

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Ana Navarro, a Republican strategist and commentator, was national Hispanic campaign chairwoman for John McCain in 2008, national Hispanic co-chair for Jon Huntsman’s 2012 campaign and was supporting Jeb Bush’s candidacy for 2016. Follow her on Twitter @ananavarro. The opinions expressed in this commentary are hers.

I didn’t want to write this. I avoided making a decision as long as I could. I schlepped my absentee ballot all over the country for almost four weeks. I would periodically take it out of the envelope, look at it, shake my head in disgust, and put it back in my suitcase.

I had decided to write-in my mother as a symbolic protest vote against the Democratic and Republican nominees. I didn’t want to vote for either of them.

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#WhatWeNeedToSucceed: A Letter to the Next President on Behalf of Women Entrepreneur

Elizabeth Gore, Dell EIR Elizabeth Gore, Dell EIR 1 Nov 2016
#WhatWeNeedToSucceed

Nov. 1, 2016

To: Secretary Hillary Clinton / Mr. Donald Trump

Dear Madam Secretary / Mr. Trump:

We write to you today on behalf of our nation’s leading innovators, entrepreneurs and influencers regarding one of the largest untapped economic and social opportunities in our country – women entrepreneurs. If women and men participated equally in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, the United States’ GDP could rise by $30 billion.

While women are starting businesses twice as fast as men, they face unique challenges, including experiencing disproportionately high failure rates, receiving only seven percent of venture capital and being represented in only seven percent of media stories. Through leadership and sound public policy, our country can benefit from the economic and social opportunity women entrepreneurs cultivate.

Over the last month, top business leaders – from enterprise CEOs to leading entrepreneurs – developed a set of policy and leadership recommendations that we believe will help women entrepreneurs start and scale businesses. Our suggestions for the necessary elements for success for women entrepreneurs focus on access to capital, expanding and supporting networks and markets, and addressing the changing face of business through technology.

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This brief piece in the National Review provides very provocative contrast about the way Trump’s new campaign CEO thinks about building the right wing (“turn on the hate”) and how traditional conservatives do (“love of country”).

We shouldn’t give a pass to those in the ‘Establishment’ that flirted with the racism and hatred that over the last eight years allowed many to delegitimize President Obama – not just to question his policies which is more than fair game, but to question his citizenship and allegiance to America. But this is elevating the source of that aggressive hatred to the leadership of the Republican Presidential campaign and threatening the entire party.

This issue is not just going to impact the conservative movement or Republicans. It will impact America and the world.

Any place in the world where extremism and radicalism are celebrated ends up harming the very society that tolerated and encouraged it, ultimately boomeranging against those that unleashed that intolerance against others.  The ruling house of Saud in Saudi Arabia promulgated Wahabbi teachings across the world, spreading a militantly intolerant version of Islam across the world. This more than anything metastasized into Al Qaeda and ISIS, which now also consider the Saudi rulers as apostates and attack them also.

If we teach our children to disdain those different from them as opposed to teaching them empathy and respect for those different from us, they will grow with hatred as a reflex, which is so destructive to them and to our world. The antidote is to teach them empathy, the strength it requires, and the strength it provides. The same goes for adults, only it is so much harder by the time we’ve developed our habits, our instincts and our way of thinking.

Article below:

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My father, Roman Lubetzky, was a rarity among survivors of concentration camps. Most of his fellow survivors either were immersed in the horror of the Holocaust and sadly embittered by it, or were determined to shut it out of their lives and never again talk about it.   My Dad would talk about it to anyone who would listen, and would reignite suffering as he recounted his experiences as a little kid from 9 when the war started to 15 when he was rescued from Dachau. 

And yet he always talked about it with humanistic positive hope for the future, emphasizing the importance of building bridges and preventing the suffering of any human being.  He taught me compassion for the Palestinian cause, just as he was a fervent believer in Israel as the one homeland of the Jewish people.

Ziad Asali, whose latest article is here, is among the very few people I have ever met who reminds me of the moral courage that my Dad had – to proudly wear his historic pain on his shoulders, not to recriminate and as a way to guilt others, but as a responsibility to forge a better way for his people and for humanity.

Most Palestinians and Israelis would want to move on with their lives and would accept a two state solution.  But not enough people take it upon themselves to bring it about.

In the meantime, passionate minorities with far more extremist perspectives – that would deny the right of the other side to freedom, dignity, respect, security, and a State of their own – take it upon themselves to speak loudly – as often evidenced by those who take the time to express mean comments on these boards, from either extreme side.

Only if people like Ziad Asali lead the way will this conflict and the suffering that comes with it come to an end.  Anything other than a two state SOLUTION is just an illusion that will condemn those who live there with continued hatred and war.

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The Jason Puracal story (below) is so sad that it’s difficult to read.   To speak out against this injustice, sign the petition.

 

Spotted by Daniel Lubetzky, by Adeena Schlussel

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This NYT article by Joe Nocera argues that Jon Corzine is going to get off the hook for pilfering money from segregated consumer accounts.  It’s ridiculous to believe that the MF Global Executives took this money by accident as they have claimed- and it’s even more ridiculous that they may exit blame free as it sets a concerning precedent for future “accidents.”

Spotted by Daniel Lubetzky, by Adeena Schlussel

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Thanks to Harriet Green who shared this extraordinarily powerful viral video by Invisible Children about a campaign to stop Joseph Kony, a heinous murderer who has abducted tens of thousands of African children to join his army, often forcing them to murder their parents and dismember others as a rite of passage.  It is incredible that someone like this has been able to elude justice for decades!  He must be stopped.  I pledge to join the campaign.  I have forwarded the video to all my team members, made a donation, and requested their kit to post posters, and encourage you to do the same.  It is our duty as human beings.

And for activists and campaigners anywhere, this video is also a must-watch.  The organization and team putting this together is extraordinary.  This is one of the best campaigns I have witnessed ever.  Truly commendable and cutting edge.  Lots for us to learn about.

STOP KONY IN 2012!

KONY 2012 from INVISIBLE CHILDREN on Vimeo.

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