Closing Thought–07Dec16

75 years ago day……

Today we commemorate the “Day of Infamy”…..the Japanese attack on our naval base at Pearl Harbor….they also attacks a few other installations but Pearl Harbor was the biggie for them……the day we entered into the conflict known as “World War 2″…….

Please take a moment and remember those brave men, 2403 total, that gave their lives on this day……they should NEVER be forgotten!

We are also in the middle of commemorating the 100 years that it has been since the start of another “Great War”….World War One…the war that gave us the world we now live in……

The world as we know it today began with the 1st World War…..and sadly…not much has changed…..

As this year closes out I want to remember the horrible battles and the massive deaths of that war and that year, 1916…..the Battle of the Somme, Verdun, the Alps, etc…….

Spend a few minutes of your time and see what the soldiers a hundred years ago faced…..

Source: Overview of 1916 During World War 1

Thanx for your time….please take some time to remember these braves souls also….

We should NEVER forget the sacrifices that our troops have made over the years…….and are still making…..we owe them so much…..and we remember so little.

Closing Thought–02Dec16

GOP–When It Was A “Big Tent” Party……..

My grandfather, a man that I found to be an astute individual, was a Republican in his voting prime.  He always said that he could get behind their platform for it would strengthen the country and make it a much better place for ALL Americans.

The last time he voted was 1956…..

The years before Reagan and his assault on any one not privileged…aka “Welfare Queens”…..

If the GOP were still a party of ideas then I would be a Republican…but sadly they have long since vanished….replaced with a party of division, wealth and privilege……nothing they propose anymore will “make America great again”…..

Sadly there are no moderate or liberal Repubs left…..they have been replaced by the twats on the far Right….and that will be a worthless situation….very little if anything will be done in DC…..

Together, Donald Trump and his GOP cohorts who won on November 8 represent some of the worst tendencies in the country. Trump personifies our economic and social contradictions front and center, loud and clear. The mainstream media recognizes that Donald Trump certainly won, but few seem willing to discuss how the far right wrangled a significant victory on Election Day.

This should not be surprising. While members of the intelligentsia are now scrambling to vindicate our democratic system and call for unity, they spent years ignoring the cracks in its economic foundation. No doubt they would ignore the growing fissures now manifest, oblivious to the system poised to crash upon us. Their belief in the American status quo ushered Trump into the presidency.

Source: Let’s Face It: There Is No Moderate GOP

It took about 30 years for the GOP to go from a party of ideas to a party of immature BS…….The GOP will remain a stagnant party as long as they keep purging the Moderates and Liberals….the party will remain a party in name ONLY!


What Do You Know About The Electoral College?

After the Right made a big deal out of the calls for the elimination of the Electoral College I decided to do a series on the subject…..I mean some of us have been fighting to rid society of this dinosaur for decades just the Right was too goddamn busy imposing their religious beliefs on everyone to notice…..

The 2016 election is over….and Mr. Trump has won the big enchilada….he won the electoral college and it appears that Clinton may have won the popular vote….and division has started yet another debate about the electoral college.

Lots of pros and cons…personally the only solution is a popular vote….period!

I have been calling for the elimination of the EC since 2008 on this blog….and that was when Obama was elected…I guess the Leftist thing is just wrong (but of course not one person will admit it)…and I invite anyone that knows how to use the archives to do so to check my statement…..if you doubt what I say……

But let’s look at some historic perspective (you knew that was coming) on the issue……

When U.S. citizens go to the polls to “elect” a president, they are in fact voting for a particular slate of electors. In every state but Maine and Nebraska, the candidate who wins the most votes (that is, a plurality) in the state receives all of the state’s electoral votes. The number of electors in each state is the sum of its U.S. senators and its U.S. representatives. (The District of Columbia has three electoral votes, which is the number of senators and representatives it would have if it were permitted representation in Congress.) The electors meet in their respective states 41 days after the popular election. There, they cast a ballot for president and a second for vice president. A candidate must receive a majority of electoral votes to be elected president.

The reason that the Constitution calls for this extra layer, rather than just providing for the direct election of the president, is that most of the nation’s founders were actually rather afraid of democracy. James Madison worried about what he called “factions,” which he defined as groups of citizens who have a common interest in some proposal that would either violate the rights of other citizens or would harm the nation as a whole. Madison’s fear – which Alexis de Tocqueville later dubbed “the tyranny of the majority” – was that a faction could grow to encompass more than 50 percent of the population, at which point it could “sacrifice to its ruling passion or interest both the public good and the rights of other citizens.” Madison has a solution for tyranny of the majority: “A republic, by which I mean a government in which the scheme of representation takes place, opens a different prospect, and promises the cure for which we are seeking.”


A bit more on the history……

Source: The Troubling Reason the Electoral College Exists | TIME

But could there be more to this issue than a simple pro and con debate?

There always is when it comes to American political system……

To be clear, this critique of the racialized origins of the Electoral College should not be interpreted as the cheap product of disappointment over the most recent election results, but rather as an effort to tap into what will likely be a short-lived public appetite for presidential politics in order to explore how US political institutions are themselves always already racialized. To be sure, race and racism in the US context have long served as some of the most significant guarantors of democratic structures and institutions. In short, US democracy itself is a racial project whose fulcrum hinges on policies of inclusion and exclusion.

Source: Slavery, Democracy and the Racialized Roots of the Electoral College

This debate is a debate that has been had before and has accomplished nothing….I will be covering this a bit more in the days and weeks to come….please if there are any opinions we would love to hear them…..

A Thanksgiving Ode to John Horse and the Black Seminoles

It is two days past T’giving and I always post something historical…I apologize that missed this for the day……

I know I try to force feed history to my readers….but with good reason…..we should never forget our heritage and culture……whether good or bad…..

An engraving of John Horse, leader of the Black Seminoles. (Image: N. Orr)

John Horse and the Black Seminoles secured the first Emancipation Proclamation years before Lincoln’s by forcing the white establishment in Florida to compromise. Their story is unfortunately overlooked, but important for the future of Black and Brown people across the Americas.

The two races, the Negro and the Indian, are rapidly approximating; they are identified in interests and feelings….Should the Indians remain in this territory, the Negroes among them will form a rallying point for runaway Negroes from the adjacent states; and should they remove, the fastnesses of the country would be immediately occupied by negroes. — US General Thomas S. Jesup 

Source: A Thanksgiving Ode to John Horse and the Black Seminoles

Now with your history lesson complete…..go have some fun and smile…..

Echoes: The French Revolution

Since so many will be dashing out to partake in the ritual of “Black Friday” today will be a mish mash of posts since readership will be down…..

AS always…I like history….so why not start the days of wine and candles before the Christmas break with a little history….a little education is my gift to you….

Why not start with that other revolution….the one in France?

Shadows of Revolution concerns itself not with predicting the future but with clarifying the past and the understanding the present.

David Bell opens one section of his new collection of essays by quoting from the diaries of the great nineteenth-century French historian Jules Michelet: “It is you that I beg for help, O my noble country,” Michelet wrote, hoping that France would be able to replace the importance that “extinguished Christianity” once held in modern life.

It would be difficult to find a more appropriate summary of the global transformations ushered in by the Enlightenment and the French Revolution than this: a Romantic-era French intellectual recognizing the power of nationalism to replace religion as the social force that inspires mass human behavior.

Source: Echoes: The French Revolution | World Affairs Journal

Now do you feel smarter?  you are welcome.

Africa and the First World War

We are in the process of remembering the first World War….the world’s first modern war…..and the beginning of American interventionism….we all should study the causes and the effects……for this war created the world we know today.

A friend was teaching a class on the First World War….he knew of my interests on the conflict and asked if I knew anything about the war’s effect on Africa…I told him I knew more about the conflict and the Middle East but he asked if I would come lecture to his class on the African campaign….

ASkara soldiers at shooting practice in German East Africa

A million people died in East Africa alone during the First World War. Many Africans also fought in Europe, defending the interests of their colonial masters. Today, their sacrifice has been largely forgotten.

The most impressive monument for African victims of the First World War (1914-1918) is not to be found in Africa but in France. At the battle of Delville, one of the engagements of the Battle of the Somme in 1916, the South African 1st Infantry Brigade sustained heavy casualties. John Del Monde knows the site well. He is a member of the board of the South African Legion veterans’ association. Together with partner associations from other Commonwealth member states, he has made it his life’s work to keep alive the memory of all those who fought for the British monarchy. To mark the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I, ceremonies are being held in South Africa and Namibia and a new monument unveiled in Flanders, Del Monde told DW.

Source: Africa and the First World War | World War I | DW.COM | 16.04.2014

I was pleased to see the interests that the students showed in this part of the conflict……few sources on World War One seldom mention the deaths by Africans that fought in Europe….

I hope this lecture help some realize the scope of the deaths in WW1.

Closing Thought–17Nov16

Presidential scandals……it seems in recent history we have had more than our fair share of scandals around the White House.

Nixon it was Watergate and Agnew, Carter it was the hostages and peanut-gate, Reagan it was Iran-Contra, Clinton it was many most of them dealing with sex, Bush2 it was the lies for war and Obama…he had very little scandals other than the major news fakes…..and now we have a new president-elect, Donald Trump…..

It has been a little over a week since his victory and there has been nothing but confusion and contradictions and lies flying around Trump Tower…….how soon before we have our fist Trump Admin scandal?

On Monday, appearing at his first press conference since Donald Trump was made president-elect, Barack Obama spoke proudly about his administration’s track record, which was squeaky clean by two-term presidential standards. “I am very proud of the fact that we will—knock on wood—leave this administration without significant scandal,” he said. “We’ve made mistakes, there have been screw-ups, but I will put the ethics of this administration and our track record in terms of just abiding by the rules and norms, and keeping trust with the American people—I will put this administration against any administration in history.”

Source: The Trump cabinet is going to be plagued by scandals. | New Republic

This admin is shaping up as one that will be the talk of the town for decades after it slides into the annals of history… is looking like these years will make the corruption and scandals during the Grant admin look like amateurs….(don’t know about those years?  Read a damn book!)

For those that are too lazy to read that book…..

Source: Ulysses S. Grant presidential administration scandals – Wikipedia

Scandals are nothing new….but I think this time it will epic even more so than the scandals of the Grant admin…..