Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Two and a Half years ago!...........It's finally happening!
                                Originally posted: Sunday, July 21, 2013 
As the United States plies its brand of “democracy” in the Mideast and Persia, the Church State of Iran is countering with spreading their unique brand of Islam. It has become painfully evident that the U.S. does not have a clue when it comes to understanding any other religion forms of Christianity and Judaism. The fate of all the Mideast, Persian, and neighboring Countries hangs in the balance. With most of Europe and all of Russia sharing in this demise, the longer this state of affairs exists, the longer western expansionist tendencies in the region will last, and the more dramatic Iran’s reaction will be. What is perfectly clear is that outside involvement in the Mideast and Persia is not about the oil. It’s not about human rights. It is about the total lack of understanding of the Islamic religion. This lack of understanding fuels a high level of fear that the political and corporate driven attempts to bring calm and peace to the region can’t seem to resolve. In this case, ignorance is not bliss; it is very dangerous to the world as a whole. There is a solution to all the turmoil that has been draining the human resources of too many Countries around the world.
The solution is three-fold in nature. The first part involves a concerted effort by all non-Islamic nations to do their best in understanding the true nature of the Islamic religion. This is not a religion that foments jihad, or any sort of extreme violence. As religions go, Islam is a very beneficent religion; loving, nurturing, kind, and forgiving. The second part of the equation involves the non-Islamic nations understanding and accepting that some folks prefer a Church State to that of a western style governmental structure. Not everyone wants to be like the United States; or, Canada, England, Spain, Greece, Russia, China, etc. Once these two are put into practice, Islamic governments around the globe will truly feel that they have a place at the table, and they aren’t going to be targets of colonialism, expansionism, or occupation.
The third part is a little trickier, but not out of the realm of possibility. This would be a legal form of State sponsored assassination. The “State” in this instance would ideally be the United Nations. As a world body, the U.N. should have the ability to remove singular despots from their perches as Kings, Emirs, Dictators, Grand Imams, Ayatollahs, etc. The benchmark would not include how a ruler got into power, but what he did once he assumed that leadership role.  Topping the list of determinants for assassination would be Human Rights, as describe by the U.N.; not described by any one member Nation, or private interest group. The U.N. would have the right to choose the “who, what, when, where, and why” for this action to proceed. In no way would any corporate influence be allowed to have any weight, whatsoever, in determining the specific action. Sorry, Dick Cheney. Sorry, Halliburton. Sorry, Exxon-Mobil.
This third part, being relative drastic in nature, would necessarily be preceded by diplomatic efforts to resolve the problem in a predetermined time period. Given the enactment of this third option, it would only take a few legal assassinations to let folks know that the world means business when it comes to peaceful coexistence. In defining “crisis intervention”, this type of action offers the absolute minimum of collateral damage to people, places, and things. Certainly, all peace-loving people would agree that lowering the “collateral damage” quotient is a desirable element in achieving World Peace.
The current situation in the Near-East and Mideast is not sustainable for very much longer. The next step will undoubtedly be an escalation of hostile takeovers that the world has never seen before. The entire quagmire will amount to a “domino effect” more damaging than that which occurred in Indo-China in the 1950’s, 60’s, & 70’s; an effect the United States has yet to recover from. And, of course, what happens to Israel is totally up in the air, as they will be surrounded by the opposition.

As the year draws to an end, the United States public has born witness to an odd political aberration that the mainstream Media calls “debate”. Having grown up in an era when words actually meant something, and the correct use of the English language was lauded, I have always had a quite different idea as to what a “debate” was all about.
I recall that at one point in time there were extracurricular events as early as High School called Debate Teams. The format of any debate was comprised of two people taking opposite views of a subject with each person putting forth an argument that won over their opponent’s side of the argument.

I start to get a nervous, agitating little twitch when words in our language get hijacked by people who should know better, and twisted into a meaning, or definition, that is far from the original. I have experienced that little twitch as I have been watching and listening to this year’s political panel discussions amongst the crop of Presidential hopefuls presenting themselves to the public. These panel discussions do not comprise a debate. I direct your attention to the Webster Dictionary’s definition of both the verb and the noun shown below:


verb,  de·bate 
·           : to discuss (something) with people whose opinions are different from      your own
·           : to compete against (someone) in a debate : to argue          against another     person's opinions as part of an organized    event
·           : to think about (something) in order to decide what to do
noun  de·bate  \di-ˈbāt\
1.         a discussion or argument carried on between two teams or          sides
2.         a discussion of issues <We had a debate over where to go          on      vacation.>
  •           discussarguedebate mean to discourse about in order to reach        conclusions or to convince.
  •           discuss implies a sifting of possibilities especially by presenting     considerations pro and con<discussed the need for a new highway>. 
  •           argue implies the offering of reasons or evidence in support of     convictions   already held <argued that the project would be too costly>
  •           debate suggests formal or public argument between opposing       parties <debated the merits of the amendment>; it may also apply to           deliberation with oneself <I'm debating whether I should go>.
·                   Middle English, from Anglo-French debatre, from de- + batre to beat, from Latin battuere
·                   First Known Use: 14th century

The only true political debate occurs when the vying Parties produce their final candidate and there is a true, defined debate between two people with differing views. Ten, or eleven bodies up on a stage is not a debate. It is usually a match of “one-upmanship” between a collection of egos each attempting to be heard over all the others. This seems to inevitably result in oral diarrhea be spewed in the faces of the audience in an vain attempt to impress someone; usually themselves.
In a true debate, facts matter. This does not seem to be a practice employed by anyone running for elective office regardless of Party affiliation.
To have men and women in the Media, who tout themselves as Journalists, allow this aberration to occur, makes absolutely no sense. My immediate conclusion on this count is that these “Journalists” are calling their profession something it is not; that would be Journalism (you can look that one up, too). I must admit, here, that my first college degree was in Journalism. It hurts my head to watch in utter wonderment as the race toward elective office in this Country morphs into some strange, twisted pissing match between folks who are probably normal outside the political ring. There seems to be very little of any substance on policy and direction offered during these trying times. And, that is a disservice to the American public who deserve a lot better from their potential political leaders.

My overall conclusion is that the voting public is the last bastion and hope for changing this abortion called the political process. The American public is not stupid, dumb, or ignorant. It is within their power to affect change; Lord knows, our politicians have thrown in the towel on that concept. Does anybody really want to “take back America”? Maybe it’s time to stand up, make your voice heard, and make your vote count. Please, just do it!

Monday, December 14, 2015

Can you say, “U.S. National Immigration Policy”?

Over the course of two hundred and thirty-nine years, thirty-seven out of forty-four U.S. Presidents have tried and failed. The other seven, apparently, just didn’t give a damn. Do not lose sight of the fact that the U.S. Congress hasn’t been able to craft a workable solution either, so no political Party is above this short-coming.

The United States has been able to craft the World’s most powerful economy, military, democracy, and progressive society. The Nation has overcome Colonialism, slavery, women’s voting restrictions, Labor abuses, major diseases, one major economic depression, countless recessions, two World Wars, and a slew of natural disasters. Based on this short list, it doesn’t seem unreasonable to assume that the Nation could come up with a comprehensive Immigration Policy that would stand the test of time (as the U.S. Constitution has). At the start of the Industrial Revolution, our Immigration non-policy was necessarily open to the masses. The U.S. needed a work force to fill the emerging factories, and build a solid middle-class for the Nation. This approach is no longer valid given the World economy and the U.S. economy in the twenty-first Century. No one who preaches the historic policies is dealing in reality; the Government needs to step away from that train of thought.

The solution might be multifaceted, and, as such, require folks from all corners and persuasions of the Political, Social, and Economic spectra to actually agree on something other than their own trite, insignificant agendas. A practical proposal would take “a little of this, and a little of that” to construct at least the framework of a comprehensive, long-term plan of action. This may best be served by, first, looking at the short-term; three to five years out. Follow this with a seamless transition to a long-term, permanent Policy, Legislation, and/or an Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

There are a number of basic areas that need addressing
in the overall, larger picture of Immigration Policy:

Categories – Normal, modern-day flow of immigration; refugee immigration; student visas; tourist visas; business visas; any more that make sense; permanent vs. temporary; keep it simple; *based on the U.S. Constitution, there is a division between Church and State, so Church will not be a considered

Numbers – in each category, come up with an annual quota amount; leave some room for emergencies (war, natural disasters, etc.)

Tracking – U.S. citizens who leave the Country and end up in a war zone aiding, abetting, or fighting for the enemy will automatically forfeit his/her U.S. citizenship and passport/visa –they will not be allowed to re-enter the U.S., ever; for temporary entrants, a strict no nonsense verification method (a three month, or one semester, re-registration stipulation); any deviation from this will result in immediate expulsion and a ban on re-entry; certain restrictions on Social Services will apply

Entry - airports and seaports designated and fully  equipped to handle the processing of immigrants; as for the borders - the Nation must make a decision to stop invading other Countries with armed forced; The northern and southern borders can then be patrolled by the Army National Guard rotating on a State-by-State basis; Naval Reserve will help enhance to Coast Guard; the Air Force Reserve will secure the air space; this will guarantee that the Nation will have a  “well maintained Militia” as eluded to in the 2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution; appropriate, modern surveillance techniques and hardware will be used in all instances; ( a collateral spin-off might just be a gross reduction in drug and human smuggling across all four borders)

Path to Citizenship – a one-size-fits-all program; must learn to be proficient in English; residency rules will apply; birth in the U.S. does not make one a citizen until parent(s) fully fulfill their obligation; certain restrictions on Social Services between entry and citizenship

It is probably unrealistic to think about a Constitutional Amendment. The current state of the Federal Congress might preclude any meaningful legislation. That leaves a State-by-State nationwide referendum as the most viable way of achieving the goal. A simple 2/3rds majority should seal the deal. The referendum in each State will be identical; no changes allowed; and, definitely no “ear-marks”, or addendums. There will be no list of “exemptions”, thus closing out any attempt at creating “loopholes”.