Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Tea Party Will Win and America Will Lose

By Tom Kando

 On October 14, Frank Rich wrote a disturbing article which sounds very true, alas: THE TEA PARTY WILL WIN INTHE END (New York Times Oct. 14, 2012).

Here is what Rich says, essentially: America will forever remain a right-wing country. American popular culture is fundamentally anti-government. This ideology is entrenched, and it is being re-enforced forever by the plutocracy’s funding of propaganda - political campaigns, talk radio, the Western “individualistic” cowboy culture allied with old Southern anti-federalism in support of racism.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Nobody's Century: Rethinking American Foreign Policy

By Madeleine Kando

According to retired diplomat and former Ambassador Chas Freeman, the way America sees the world and its place in it, is a figment of its own outdated imagination, not the way the world really is today.

One of the reasons for this is that the 20th century was an American century, a century largely dominated by the United States in political, economic and cultural terms. It fought and won over fascism, it promoted the rule of law and democratic ideals throughout the world and after the Second World War, it was the defender of the ‘Free World’, made possible by the Cold War and Communism. That came to an end in 1989 when Communism imploded. There was no longer a common enemy and America was left strong militarily but weak in ideology. Read more...

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Don't be Fooled by Affable Romney

By Tom Kando

We have had  four debates, including the vice-presidential one.  The Republican candidates acquitted themselves quite well. Although President Obama did extremely well in two out of his three debates, the end result of the four debates  is a Republican victory because of  the following reason:

 Before the debates, the media had succeeded in convincing a slight majority of the electorate that the Republican ticket was dangerously radical.  Repeated  faux-pas by Romney such as “the 47%”  were  a godsend for the Obama campaign. The widespread  perception was that Romney  was (1) a buffoon, (2) incompetent and (3) “severely” conservative. The latter perception was justified, as he had expressed many severely conservative views as long as he was courting the Republican base during the primaries.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

President Obama: We Need Four More Years of the Same

By Tom Kando

And here is another  shibboleth - heard even on the strongly  pro-Obama MSNBC Chanel: that the President’s record of  achievements is weak, and that he is   forced to be  negative  and to focus on criticizing Romney, rather than running on his own record and promising four more years of the same. What hogwash! He should proudly tout his amazing record!  Cute jokes like “Romnesia” aren’t going to be enough to win. Here is just a small sample

1. Obamacare: This President succeeded where a dozen predecessors all the way back to Truman and Nixon failed. With Obamacare, the US finally joins the ranks of other  civilized countries.
2. He inherited two wars, and has already ended one and a half of them.
3. He has promoted women’s equality through such legislature as the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.

The Presidential Campaign: A Hobbesian Trap **

by Madeleine Kando

Ok, so now that the presdential campaign is almost over, I can look back on the entire process, which includes the primaries and see a steady, gloomy descent into the abyss of Hobbesian hell called the Hobbesian Trap.

The first Presidential debate on October 3rd, you know, the one in which Obama did so ‘poorly’, was the beginning of an ever accelerating slide into the fire of damnation. Obama was still under the illusion that debates are there to talk about ideas, policies and the like. Ha, how naïve, how childish. Romney set him straight on that one. He came out blazing, sword drawn, went for the jugular as soon as the clock started ticking. Read more...

Saturday, October 20, 2012

The Benghazi Pseudo-Issue

By Tom Kando        

The Republicans  are desperately  milking the Benghazi pseudo-issue for all its worth. On October 19, ultra-reactionary Charles Krauthammer wrote another column accusing President  Obama of grave malfeasance in this matter, predicting that he will lose grievously  on this issue during his next presidential debate with Mitt Romney (Sacramento  Bee, Oct. 19, 2012).  So the issue can be expected to come up in a big way during the debate. Here is what it’s all about:

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Eating Crow About Lance Armstrong

By Tom Kando

It is now  inescapable that Lance Armstrong cheated MASSIVELY and consistently during much of his career.  As the Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad puts it, “the stench is rising...there is overwhelming proof of systematic doping by the seven-time Tour winner.” (October 10, 2012).  The number of witnesses testifying to this has risen to 26. The accusations include alleged intimidation and threats by Armstrong against his peers, huge suspicious payments to Italian Dr. Michele Ferrari,  and all sorts of  other sleaze. Read more...

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Obama’s Incredible Transformation

by Madeleine Kando

Last night’s second Presidential Debate was so intense and suspenseful, that it made for far better entertainment than my usual dose of ‘Wallander’ Mystery series. Who would have thought that the President of these United States would give Americans a more exciting performance than most of what you could watch on tv that night?

When the whole thing was over, I felt like I had witnessed a prize-fighter contest without the bruises and bloody faces. I knew Obama wasn’t going to make the same mistake twice, Getting knocked out in the first round of the first Presidential debate sure taught him a lesson. But I wasn’t prepared for this kind of fighting spirit, especially from a man who is known to be ‘civil’ and ‘moderate’. Read more...

Monday, October 15, 2012

Olé, Toro!

by Madeleine Kando

I am walking in the forest, enjoying a typical fall afternoon in beautiful New England. It’s the best time of year around here. I am listening to the soft crunch of my steps on the carpet of multicolored leaves. Red, brown, ocher, yellow… Since my friend Mark took me on a nature hike last week, walking in the woods has acquired a multi-dimensionality that I didn’t know existed. Why all these colors? How did a Maple leaf decide to turn red, an oak leaf brown and a chestnut leaf yellow? Even in death these leaves insist on shouting out who they are, just in case you mistake them for something else. I am ruined for life now that I have been initiated in the intricate world of plants. Gone are the days of innocent walks to exercise my dog. Gone are the days of blissful ignorance. Now I can no longer see the forest through the trees. I am now stepping on an Acer Tataricum leaf and on my right I am passing a Quercus Alba. Gone are the days when it used to be a simple oak tree. Read more...

Friday, October 12, 2012

The Vice-Presidential Debate: A Big Win for Biden

By Madeleine Kando

Yesterday’s vice-presidential debate between Joe Biden and Paul Ryan was heated, confrontational and everything that was lacking in last week’s presidential debate. If you thought that Romney and Obama’s debate lacked specifics, yesterday’s discussion was chock full of facts.

Personally, I thought Biden ‘won’ most of the arguments during the nine segments of the debate. As it progressed, Ryan had to fight harder and harder to defend his stance on the issue at hand. Although both debaters were smart and verbally proficient, at times, Biden was flat out laughing and showing with clear body language that what Ryan was saying was bogus, and his ‘facts’ were promptly and brilliantly corrected by Biden, albeit with a touch of impatience. Read more...

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Post-Mortem of Obama's Debate Defeat: Sense and Nonsense

By Tom Kando

The media have saturated the airwaves with their spin on the October 3 Romney-Obama debate, ad nauseam. The verdict is unanimous - Obama lost. The discussions range from sensible to ridiculous:

(1) The President was complacent. Being ahead in the polls, he just wanted to run out the clock.

(2) He was not prepped properly. He was too busy governing. Or he thought that he was so much smarter than Romney that he didn’t need to be prepped (hubris). On the other hand, Romney has been toughened up by a year of debating many other primary candidates (including several imbeciles) Bachmann, Cain, Gingrich, Paul, Perry, Santorum. Read more...

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Hip People Will Vote for Obama and Squares Will Vote for Romney

By Tom Kando (Warning: be light-hearted when you read this. It’s not really scientific).

Folks: I got news for you: The REAL choice before us this fall is between Apollo and Dionysus, Square and hip, soul and no soul, love and no love. On the face of it, the upcoming election is about the interests of the rich vs. those of the middle class, individualism and freedom vs. collectivism, free market capitalism vs. welfare state, taxes and public benefits vs. business profits and productivity, in other words, “liberal” vs. “conservative”policies. Read more...