Sunday, September 11, 2011


“If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.”  -Thomas Jefferson

The event of 9/11 was an American disgrace not a tragedy.

“Tragedy” has become such a misused and misapplied word that is has lost its real meaning, depriving it of its seriousness and human dignity.  It has become a term to cover every form of loss of human life regardless of the circumstances, from accidental drowning to car accidents.

The classics say otherwise. Oedipus, the main character in classic Greek tragedy, is visited by a fate of misfortune and misery not because of unexpected, unconnected circumstances out of his control in life, but by his own doings. Oedipus is not altogether an innocent victim of fate.

In the classical sense tragedy occurs when a character brings upon himself a turn of fortune (usually from good to bad). We observe how a character makes mistakes upon mistakes trying to fix a dealt bad hand and is not able to see the complex compilation of those mistakes in his future.  Pride plays a central role in tragedy, as it does not allow the character the moral judgment necessary to see his predicament. 

The audience fears and at the same time feels pity for the character, and even cheers for him and hopes that in the end he can break from the logical but ominous path he have set for himself.  We know our character is not a bad person, just simply blind. In the end, we are able to release the tension the play creates in us because a tragedy bring us healing, but only if one is able to reconcile the facts that led to the tragic ending and the final fate of the character.

Even though we feel pity for the character, in the end we accept that his fate was all his own. The character is not innocent. That is tragedy.

When I hear of 9/11 referred to as “tragedy”, I have to ask, what was the guilt of its victims? Yes, we heard some, like former professor Ward Churchill (people working at the WTC were “little Eichmanns”) and even a linguist like Noam Chomsky blame American policies for 9/11. And even a college textbook has this conclusion, “The root cause [of world violence] is not terrorist activity. It is the relationship between the United States and the Islamic world. Until this central cancerous problem is treated, Americans will never be free from fear.”  We have also heard “They hate us for our freedom.” 

None of the statements above can be proven as true, but they serve the tragic version of 9/11. We deserved it therefore the victims of 9/11 deserved it too. But does that make it a tragedy, even if true?

Contrast the term “disgrace”.  It means “shame”, “dishonor”, “humiliation” it’s the antonym of canonization, exaltation.  And that is what 9/11 is, a disgrace.  On 9/11/01 the United States of America was disgraced, not as result of anything its victims did, knowingly or not, but by politics, cheap politics.

On 9/11 we were disgraced by politicians that did practically nothing after the first attack in 1993, even after a formal declaration of war by al-Qaeda; they disgraced the victims, and the country. The same politicians who tell us we are safer today because a 90 year old woman has to leave her wheelchair to be patted down like a criminal, or a 3 year old child has the fingers of a government employee run through his intimate clothing.

Politicians and their spouses, working for airline industry lobbies that successfully lobbied legislators for lower security standards at airports disgraced us. The same politicians that still allow for uncontrolled open borders knowing that groups like Hezbollah operate in Mexico and Venezuela.

You see, nearly 3,000 human beings were killed on 9/11 through no fault or guilt of their own. Was 9/11 a tragedy? It never was. When a "9/11" happens again who knows, perhaps, next time it will.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

A climate change I can believe in (From Cafe Magazine March 12, 2010)

By now the reasonable, the rational, should know that there are serious problems with the whole “climate change” agenda.

We have recently seen how leading scientists and institutions who have been promoting the “climate change” agenda have been caught, and have admitted, to fudging data in order to establish “scientific” evidence of global warming. If one thing has change it is the climate of the debate itself.
Resignations from East Anglia University, the leading institution in the “climate change” debacle, to resignations at the United Nations point to serious problems. A serious problem is how science has been used for political purposes. We were first told we faced a problem of “global warming” but, when dissident voices within the scientific community began not only to question but to expose serious problems with the conclusions, the terms then changed. It became no longer politically feasible to keep calling the problem “global warming”. “Climate change” became the new call to arms.
“Climate change” is such a general concept that it really means nothing to those who deal with the weather on a professional basis. Yet, to the general public it is a concept so vague that it can include anything that the “global warming” prophets want it associated with. But as any airline pilot will tell you there is “climate change” every day, indeed, every hour, and every minute.
For many people “global warming” has become a religion. But what we need is reliable, non-politically driven scientific research to determine first of all if there is global warming occurring, and then to find out what the real cause or causes may be. The division is really not between those who think that humans may have an impact on the environment and those who do not, but whether current claims that current global warming is caused by humans is true or not.
There is a narrative attached to the whole debate that seems to go beyond the mere climatological inquiry and it has political undertones. The bottom line is that a connection is being made or attempted to be made between global warming and human progress, especially as led by capitalist, free-market societies. The conclusion, judging by some of the solutions being proposed, seems to be ahead of the scientific determination of the problem: curtail life in developed nations, make them pay for global warming, excuse developing nations.
What became more telling about the whole debacle and scandal of “climate change” was the actors who most pushed for adoption of a Copenhagen accord. At that gathering the international leader who received the longest standing ovation was Hugo Chavez of Venezuela. His anti-U.S., anti-capitalism rant was applauded extensively. A few weeks later Osama bin Laden joined the cause.
We need to ask—regardless of any scientific merits—what is really driving those who have found in “climate change” a new political home?

A leading global warming scientist Dr. Phil Jones, of the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit in Britain, just recently stepped down as director. It was discovered they were manipulating data to strengthen the argument for man-made global warming. That data was been used by the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to demand of governments to cut carbon dioxide emissions. It was also used to produce the “graph” showing temperatures relatively stable for centuries as counterpart to dramatic rise in recent decades. Yvo de Boer, the U.N.'s top climate official, has also resigned.
I do not need a new religion-like belief—the global warming or climate change religion—to be a concerned and responsible citizen toward the environment. But I do want to believe that science should remain above political agendas.

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Rethinking Obama (reposted here from Cafe Magazine October 26, 2009)

I'm nearing the conclusion, as much "benefit of the doubt" I have tried to give President Obama, that we are not dealing with any of all those reasons to explain Obama one can find in conspiracy theories of the left or the right. I'm beginning to think it is all more banal and simple than all that.

I think we have in Obama the perfect and final product of the 1960's. If some kind of liberal/left Dr. Frankenstein had decided to create the perfect president for the future he would have produced Obama.

First, he would have given him Obama's psychological profile (see "Wounded Egos on the World Stage"), then he would have added all the 60's elements starting with heavy doses of pop-psychology, "I'm Okay, You're Okay" hypersensitivity, then a good quantity of "Dr. Spock's" prescription for an undeserved and aggrandized sense of self-importance and self-esteem.

He would then deconstruct any and all inherited positive views of America and reprogram his brain to see America as the reason for all the world's misery and corruption. By way of a "Clockwork Orange" type of conditioning he would proceed to ingrain in him an automatic and guttural distaste for anything military. He would fill him with a populist center-left rhetoric capable of fooling even the most educated.

And finally, imprint in him the notion that the rest of the world is really a multicultural mélange of the United Colors of Benetton waiting for the luminescence of a world Messiah as they sing "We are the world" and not for a way to advance their own interests.

In the meantime, we will either laugh or cry as we watch "the creature" running around like the emperor who has no clothes; while decisions that need to be taken are not, but appear to be.

Bush was smart. And that's the difference I make between smart and intelligent. They are not mutually exclusive but sometimes you could be only one. I think Bush was both. But Bush was not an "intellectual". Liberals and academicians especially, confuse intelligence with "intellectualism". That is why Obama has been and will continue to sit around surrounded with "pointy heads", pondering, contemplating what needs to be done.

Smart has to do more with "street smarts", business acumen, etc. A smart and intelligent person knows what needs to be done and does it. The "intellectual" is mostly abstract and see things in the abstract, he is afraid of being wrong so he will ponder for ever, without taking sides or a decision. The smart and intelligent one goes to Harvard for an MBA (Bush); the "intellectual" goes to Harvard and academia, community organizing (Obama).

When Mao said "Power is born from the barrel of a gun", it made sense. The problem is that liberals confuse "Power" with "Authority". A rapist with a gun has "power" over its victim but no authority. Today's Liberals do not believe in essential democratic values. They have de-constructed everything down to "power". Our Founding Fathers believed in power but that power resides in authority, that is "authorship", and that the authors of that power are “the people”, not the government as a separate, autonomous entity. Communists, liberals, etc., only believe in power. They reject authority. Authority requires legitimacy. Power requires only force.

Bush understood the logistic problems of having troops mobilized and waiting in the dessert for an attack on Iraq. On the way to the invasion of Iraq liberals did not understand those realities. Obama doesn't know these things either. He doesn't understand what it takes to mobilize an army and have it at peak preparation. He must think that it is just like getting on Air Force One to go to Europe to lobby for the Olympics and be back in two days.

Bush made a strategy based decision. At the height of the war against al-Qaeda his put-together coalition attacked, squashed and left Afghanistan, and then picked a better fighting ground that favored American doctrine of “re-shaping the Middle East” by moving to Iraq. Both actions were approved by the Democrats.

But let’s not forget that to win the election the Democrats had to diminish the public's view of the security brought us by Bush's bold action. Hence the Democrats mantras: "Bush took his eye off the ball in Afghanistan” and the ever popular, "Iraq is a war of choice" and “Afghanistan is a war of necessity.”

Well, now they are forced to focus on Afghanistan. Now winning depends on success in a place where nobody has ever won...long term, yet. Now we have to fight in a place that is a defensive force multiplier and probably do things that this group will not have the stomach for, bringing the full force of military occupation into play.

So yes, Iraq was a war of choice. What war isn’t? Successful commanders always force the fight on ground that favors them. Iraq was most favorable to establish a buffer zone between Iran and other interested parties against U.S. interest in the region.

President elect Obama and his team were briefed in full detail on the review and recommendations for Afghanistan in the fall of 2008. They accepted the evaluation and took it as their own. In March, President Obama announced the implementation of a strategy that was based on that review. He appointed Gen. McChrystal. Now “the war of necessity” is being treated as a “war of choice” due to the basic stability of Iraq, “the war of choice”.