Thursday, December 18, 2014

Will Renewed Relations Benefit Cuba--Or the U.S.?

Congratulations to our president for issuing a legacy-
enhancing normalization of relations between our two
countries. But as a Cuban American I am wary,
reflecting on our troubled history there since 1898,
when Spain lost Cuba at the end of the Spanish
American War. Decades of U.S. multinational
corporation dominance in Cuba, Mafia involvement,
some Senators taking a prostitute-filled vaycay from
frumpy wives, etc., all speak to the big bully
browbeating the little guy, Cuba. History is filled with
such examples. Will we go that way again?

I'm trying to remain hopeful, holiday wishes and
dreams being what they are. Perhaps we have
learned the necessary lessons, will be a better
neighbor this time around...

" ' Tis a consummation devoutly to be wished."

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Bush Family's Hubris and Greed--A Third Bush President Not What We Need

--For pity's sake! It is time for new political blood in the national
arena, fresh thinking and fresh doing.  Judging by the drop in
excellence as we went from Bush I to Bush II, a Bush III might
well be the worst of all.  Bush I was a decent president, not
given to rash moves and unfortunate hyperbole, as his son
was. Why does this family not retire from the stage? (I feel
the same way about Hilary Clinton, who has had almost every
political job of note.)

Greed and hubris are back of this shameful clutching
at the limelight. We need decent, effortful, principled
and talented people to pilot our ship of state, NOT
stale retreads! Isn't there more imagination and
backbone available to us?

And what makes the  Bushes and the Clintons think
they are the best and the brightest? I rate them
merely mediocre; after all, they have records to
run from.

Ellen Warren and Ed Markey, Massachusetts'
cream of the crop, throw your hats into the ring--
PLEASE.

Monday, December 8, 2014

America's Police Must Respect Life by Obeying the Law

...Or why would the public obey and respect them?  The last two
weeks, with white cops killing unarmed black males, are proof of
the ongoing, shocking inequities between police and African
Americans. I read that rarely has a white cop EVER been charged
in the killing of blacks, nationwide. What kind of double standard
IS this? --Answer: an unjust one, and people are beginning to
rise up against such unethical, immoral and illegal treatment.

The next step is a massive voter registration drive, in places
where blacks are the resident majority but the authority is
mostly white. Nothing will change until the system is more
diverse, take that to the bank. Power, properly directed,
can heal much injustice. Marching in the streets merely
demonstrates unhappiness; we must change those at the top!

Meanwhile, President Obama, working for calm, publicly
reminds the U.S. that things are better than they were
regarding racism. I'm sorry, sir, that is weak, will not do.
Slavery was outlawed in 1865--how long, how many
generations must wait? It is time for the nation's 13%
black population to unite and begin, in a serious
way, to effect elections.

But before then, police must obey the law they are
SWORN to uphold--especially respecting human
life, including African American ones.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Happy Holidays to My Readers and Posters

My very best wishes to my readers and my two loyal posters,
Lester and Dan in this holiday season. We will shortly arrive
at a new year, one which should be filled with hope, humanity
and better understanding worldwide. It will take effort on a
massive scale, but it is at least remotely possible...

Because of people like Lester and Dan. You two always
keep your thinking caps on, a must in these turbid times.
You haven't given up or given in, even though events
can conspire to tempt anyone to do so.  Keep up the
good work!

See you all soon on the blogosphere; best regards,
Amber

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Buy Online--It May Be Safer

After the two shooting deaths reported at tony Nordstrom's
on Chicago's Mag (supposedly for magnificent) Mile, I had
a stray thought: why buy at big stores, where conceal and
carry nuts can enter and behave criminally, crazy? Answer:
If possible, buy online. The chances for violence with this
method are extremely rare, thankfully. No crowds, no
crazies, what's not to like?

So the two killed, a domestic violence situation played
out in public, purportedly were in love...some love!
Obviously the guy was obsessed. Real love does not
act this way; generally there is some concern and
caring for the other's welfare. This man cared nothing
for anyone's safety, merely male ego gone wrong.

This holiday, for peace of mind, why not buy on
line? It's likely to be much safer.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Injustice in Ferguson Not Relieved by a Good Grand Jury Decision

As the prosecuting attorney droned on in an attempt
to qualify (-spin) the skate-off awarded to Officer
Wilson by the Grand Jury, I realized the man
would not be charged. There was no reason not to
get immediately to the point other than to set up
the "rationale" for this ill-advised decision.

Even the devising of the Grand Jury itself was not
balanced: of the 12, only THREE were African
American. If they didn't actually agree with
the others' "no probable cause" sentiment,
what influence could they have had? It took
nine of the 12 to craft the outcome, so you
do the math. Ferguson is 67% black; how
does that translate into only three African-
Americans sitting on the Grand Jury?

I am disgusted and disheartened. With the
sharp decline in the intellectual ability of
most in key positions, married to the lack
of a vigorous electorate there in Ferguson,
the events since August were almost
preordained. I hope this is a wake-up
call to voters there; more blacks on the
local council and the police department
just might produce more reasonable,
equitable policies and practices...

But 'til then, this Grand Jury decision will stand
as another example of status-quo injustice.

It's the Wrong Time for Hagel to Resign

I have long held that Mr. Obama's White House advisers
are less than competently assured, less than what we
need in the Age of Terror; they demonstrate an unfortunate
sense of timing now, in insisting on Chuck Hagel's
resignation, which has been accepted. There should
be continuity at Defense while we struggle to handle
extremely problematic affairs in the Middle East. There
will be a power and policy vacuum while a transition
occurs, and no shining candidate for Defense Secretary
springs to mind.

Beginning with Axelrod and Plouffe, Mr. Obama
has favored his political Chicago connections, not
taking a page from Abraham Lincoln in presiding
over a diverse cabinet--except for appointing Mr.
Hagel, a moderate Republican who served in
Vietnam. These two characteristics made Hagel
a fine choice, which Obama now spurns on the
advice of his Chicago hacks.

The timing here couldn't be worse. The president
is wrong, Mr. Hagel has not "completed" anything,
not while ISIS runs rampant, among other nettlesome
dangers. There IS still time, however, for Mr. Obama
to complete an unfortunate chapter in his presidency--
get rid of most of his Chicago-based White House
inner circle...

No time like the present.

**************************************

[Our president could ask former president Jimmy
Carter to be his Middle East adviser; Mr. Carter
is highly knowledgeable in Middle East Affairs,
is well liked there, has written important
books about the area. Why not? He certainly
has more foreign policy awareness and sensitivity
than anyone currently on the team.  But pride
rather than statesmanship will prevent such
an inspired appointment.]