Archive for August, 2009|Monthly archive page

Health Care

Overheard a woman saying that when living in London her daughter went to nursery school with Prince William, and that he was a very naughty boy.

I bet! I didn’t even know he wanted to become a nurse…

Jay Walking

Their Washington: Some don’t know the difference between The State of the Union and Union Station

America vs Islam

America is preoccupied with the image it has in the Muslim world, which is nothing compared to the image Muslims have created for themselves in the rest of the world but are blind to. The Muslim world proving to be incapable of evolution, of self-criticism, of reform or bringing itself and its morals into the XXIst century.

Therefore concessions made on the basis of reciprocity never leading to meaningful policy. Not before Islam generates the dynamics of an Old Testament and a New Testament, moving from a culture of revenge and retribution to one of forgiveness and tolerance. At one point Aristotelian truthfulness incorporated into the national curriculum and modern day Islamic reformers arising, doing what Luther, Calvin and others did for successful, prosperous Christianity, pulling Islam out of cruel corruption and complacency.

Until such time, endless conflict and deception, unless true political visionaries like Ata Turk come to the fore, as a first step separating Church and State in modern Islamic countries. And good people to ask about progress, Muslim women, of course

PS In this general direction, what did the American University in Beirut or Cairo ever achieve, but kowtow?

Turn, Turn!

The Steyning Book of Wisdom defines a pornographic photograph, as a snatch shot

Brightness Dark

For certain complex jobs, complex men are not always the answer. Slightly obstinate, one-track minded thinkers sometimes much better equipped to face a world itself obstinate and one-dimensional, in so many of its parts.

Take the case of President Reagan, my old friend Irwin Steinberg once assured me, not the brightest leader but wearing out the Russians who were just as torpid, plus running out of gas and high-octane young blood. Young Clinton a lot smarter but screwing up on everything he put his hands on, including his heavyweight intern and her younger sister, known as Oral B. Credited with a booming right-wing economy and zero deficits inherited from the Thatcher/Reagan camp, their breaking retrograde unions’ back and cutting government excess, and him lucky enough not to have to go to war.

Bush Jr not so lucky, 9/11 on his watch, but history probably on his side after the dust settles in Afghanistan and Iraq, grave threats needing to be addressed and doing so with a straightforward, perhaps overly simplistic, hard-line approach, but getting an ugly job done in an ugly, ugly world.

With Irwin insisting, if you’re too smart you correctly think of all the things that might go wrong, and waver, and consult, and double check, and doubt, constantly worrying about your place, the polls, instead of saying That’s enough! If not, having so much less to worry about…

And it’s what preoccupies me about Obama; sometimes I think he’s too smart. On top of that the Right ever hardworking, basic, intolerant and the Left intelligent but lazier and thus more often intellectually dishonest. Not Obama himself perhaps, but all that balancing to be done, the deals, the compromises, the smiles, the handshakes, in the park, making all the rounds, forgetting down below there’s a ballgame going on.

Cheers Mr Steinberg, wherever you hold court, today, in Montreal.

Fantasy, Be Gone!

As it’s impossible to know or connect everything, Reason wishes (for) itself to be handled with great circumspection. And short cuts, ‘construct’ truths or the outright invention of missing pieces, entirely… unreasonable

O Hocus! Pocus!

She got woken by her alarm cock. The rooster who wouldn’t crow…

Baghdad Blues

Countries with irreconcilable factions, it seems, only function under the dictatorship of one of these. Free the people and soon they’re back under another’s tyranny. Societies that don’t possess the art of compromise cannot and will not prosper. There are only two solutions, one the maturing of all of its people, but this can take centuries, the other relocation of its factions into separate republics under international supervision, with proportionate sharing of all national wealth guaranteed again by the international community. And this will never happen, because the international community also is rivalry ridden. In other words, get ready for another one party or group dictatorship under the guise of democracy. Let’s face it, Mexico and others managed it semi-peacefully for nearly a century.


Steyning’s book of wisdom defines the term Meat Ball as a formal dance for butchers


Brecht, the German playwright, acidly asked Why be a man if you can be a success? And speaking of the horse’s mouth: He should know; by all accounts old Bertold wasn’t much of a man, but a great success. Would that standards vary…

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