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Web Letter

Thank you, Alexander, for giving voice to the disappointment and frustration so many citizens feel. What are we to think when our elected Congressmen, who are supposed to represent us, vote against the clearly specified desires of the majority? It is becoming easier for me to believe there are powerful and persuasive forces behind the scenes: a minority with the motive and means to suffocate our democracy, subvert our rights and steer a course favoring and furthering what is in their interest and, they believe, in ours. More than the terrorist this Administration tells us we should fear, I fear our experiment in representative democracy is withering and may soon expire unless we the people pull together and back a presidential candidate with a philosophy, conviction and platform worthy of our trust and support.

Tom Hardenbergh

Bath, MI

Aug 10 2007 - 10:45pm

Web Letter

Here is the current status of our democracy.

Senator Hillary Clinton informed us that, regardless whether we like it or not, the special interest lobbyists on the Capitol Hill are the real Americans. My God, all this time we thought they were just the ghosts or an urban myth. Who is crazier here, the Senator for publicly saying it without any influence of alcohol/drugs or us for thinking that she is the best qualified candidate for the next President?

The additional justification for her current status of the Democratic frontrunner is that she was the last Democrat in the Congress to realize we are wasting our time in Iraq. This is an accurate statement, since Senator Lieberman is now an Independent.

The question is how it is possible for Hillary to be the frontrunner. Let’s get the facts straights. Here are the last several Presidents. Bush, Clinton, Clinton, Bush, Bush,…Clinton? Obviously somebody is intentionally misusing our addiction to the brand-name power, which is just a spillover from the retail side of our lives where endless billions have been spent on the commercials. Endless hours of watching the commercials mixed up with a minimum amount of different kind of sports, shows or movies to keep us glued to the screens for a regular dose of brainwashing, have completely screwed up our sense of reality.

It seems nobody is concerned with rising obesity among the young Americans. Why is it happening? We can not blame any company individually but the whole system. McDonald, Burger King, Wendy’s, Jack in the Box, Taco Bell, KFC, Denny’s, IHOP, Pizza Hut, Papa John’s, Domino’s, Applebee’s, Olive Garden, Red Lobster, Coke, Pepsi, hundreds of different chocolate, candy, salty snack manufacturers advertising endlessly…. The common message? Eat, drink, eat, drink, eat, drink, eat, drink, eat, drink… And we wonder why our kids are obese. We have trained them to be that way!

The number of presidential candidates concerned about the current status? Zero, with the honest exception of Denis Kucinich. We don’t know what he would change, but at least we know he would try to change something.

Let’s go back to the things that hurt us more instantly. What have we learned in Iraq? Nothing, according to Senator Obama. He would repeat the same kind of mistake in Pakistan, since somebody told him we are the fools addicted to the tough guys. Somebody persuaded Mr. Obama that we, the Americans, have learned nothing in Iraq either. How foolish of him! If Senator Obama really loved his country, he should not just stop his presidential campaign but quit his Senate seat too! Why? Because he would be replaced by the better candidate? We cannot be sure of that, but we know that such his action would raise a bar for any other politician and send the message that such a kind of politics is not acceptable in our country anymore.

Again with the noticeable exception of Congressman Kucinich, what did our politicians learn in Afghanistan? Nothing! Do they really believe there is something in Afghan air and soil that makes the people be terrorists? We occupied Afghanistan, the terrorists committed several attacks, our troops shot back, hit some civilians, the civilians started shooting at our troops, our troops retaliated harder… In the meantime, the terrorists moved to Pakistan but we continued to fight against the Taliban, what means against the locals. The same thing happened in Iraq, where we are fighting against the local insurgency and where Al Qaeda membership level is ignorable.

Our leaders want to move now into Pakistan. The same thing would happen all over again. After initial skirmishes against Al Qaeda we would end up fighting the locals, while the hard core Al Qaeda would move on to Kashmir, Uzbekistan or some other wild region. Have our leaders forgotten that the ideas are not connected to any territory? History teaches us that this movement started in Egypt as a local political struggle, and after Mr. Munarak ended the political discourse by putting them in the prisons, they moved on to Sudan and the rest of story is well known to everybody.

It means we can not end up the terrorist movement without local Arab dictators (Mubarak, the Saudi King, Abdullah…) being replaced ASAP in free democratic elections. That is the only way to permanently disrupt terrorist recruitment. The point is not to expect any friendly government immediately. For several years there would be tough rhetoric coming from the Arab capitals, but that’s OK. We should prefer a tough talk to the terrorists. Have you noticed there was not a single terrorist in the 9/11 attacks coming from Iraq or Iran? The unfriendly political speeches by their leaders were enough to ventilate any frustration in the locals and that is the purpose of democracy. Neither Saddam nor Ahmedinejad have had any connection to Al Qaeda. All the terrorists were coming from supposedly friendly Arab countries.

There is no fundamental conflict between the USA and the Muslim world. All we could hear coming from the Arab Street was to leave them alone and stop meddling into their internal affairs, which is the major objective of our State Department. If we wanted to be friendly with the Arab world and if we treated them with the same respect we are treating our Western allies, we could wrap up this current conflict in several months. It all started in the 1967 with the permanent occupation of the Palestinian land and our failure to implement the fundamental principles of the international law to reverse that status. If the UN did the same thing it did after Saddam occupied Kuwait, we wouldn’t be in the current situation. For the sake of truth we have to understand that we have been extremely helpful in the continued occupation of Palestine.

Our problem is that not a single politician is capable of understanding those fundamentals, with the exception of Congressman Kucinich. It is getting boring to repeat it constantly. How can we fix the problem if we fail to define it?

Finally, do you know why the British are pulling out of Iraq soon? Because Mr. Brown replaced Mr. Blair? No! The true reason is that the British generals in charge of southern Iraq pressured the British political leadership to do it. Why? Because the British generals know that after initial occupation of the foreign country there is a short period in which you can stabilize the country. If you fail to do it, the tide unavoidably changes and the local population turns against the occupation force. For some reason, the White House and Pentagon believe that the historic lessons don’t apply to us.

But, the important message to all of us is that the special interest lobbyists in Washington DC are the real Americans and that‘s what the current Presidential race is all about. It means that the real Americans must have real American interests in their hearts and that’s why Hillary cares so deeply about the special interests.

What about America? According to Mrs. Clinton, it is so big and powerful it can solve own problems. But the lobbyists, they are so little, cute, vulnerable and close to you that one just has to hug them…

Kenan Porobic

Charlotte, NC

Aug 10 2007 - 3:03pm

Web Letter

When the government won't listen, the only weapon the general public has is the ballot box. The Republicans were handed their heads in the last election over immigration reform. Democrats will have problems in 2008 with the issues mentioned in this piece.

I think we will have to look outside the political parties to organizations and individuals who can bring pressure against the government on issues that are important to the public. Regardless of one's opinion of immigration reform, it was interesting that Lou Dobbs could help crash the Senate telephone system over that issue.

While not endorsing Dennis Kucinich, big labor gave him a bully pulpit to expound on issues that they deem important. Since I share their concerns, Kucinich will get my vote.

It is not always about winning a tactical victory. Over time, sending a message can also be effective.

Pervis J. Casey

Riverside, CA

Aug 9 2007 - 4:35pm

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