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Let us not lose sight of the essence and the big picture. The
details and the legalese of whether what happened to Eric
Garner was or was not ``chokehold" according to New York
Law and/or according to Federal Law diminish the fact that
in this, our United States, Police officers are taking, under
various circumstances, human lives, even, as is crystal clear
in Mr. Garner's case, without responding with proportionate
force to a crime being committed or to any threat of violence
of comparable magnitute, and they are not held accountable;
in fact worse, they are not even tried for this, the crowning
offense in any well-functioning legal system. I am deeply
ashamed and I am devastated and embarrassed that while
my State and its Diplomats go around the World preaching
to ``less respectful" and ``less well governed" States how to
Respect Fundamental Human Rights and Liberties, its Civil
and other Servants fall so abominably short from upholding
domestically in Law all these same rights uniformly and
equally for all its Citizens as demanded by Public Conscience.

My humble advice to the Israeli politcians before they follow
another downward slope. Just think of what occurred when
a State declared itself an ``Aryan" State before and just think
of how disconcerting and uncomfortable for Jewish People
and other minorities it would be if, say, Italy declared itself
an Italian Catholic State of European Heritage or France
declared itself a French Catholic State of French Heritage,
or some other similar phrasings were adopted, with open or
covert intonations of discriminatory, racist and nationalistic
overtones. The Land of the Israelis should be the last State to
support such divisions in a modern World of Fraternity and
Unity and the State of Israel, where many persecuted people
found refuge, should be the last State to forgo its Right and
its Moral Standing, through its own mishandling and via
erroneous political machinations, to stand up against such
moves by any and all other States.
We need a World where
every race and ethnicity would feel welcome everywhere and
where merit and equality prevail; not a World where a State
declares who is more valued and more equal than others,
based on superficial criteria and bankrupt ideologies that
have cause profound grief in the past.

Levin claims dramatic changes have taken place in
Afghanistan and I have no knowledge or reason to
doubt his statement. But what is extremely disconcerting
and bothersome is that the same people that always keep
in mind the cost-benefit balancing weights when it comes
to domestic projects and domestic spending, never tell
us what the costs have been to attain those changes and
reap the ensuing benefits and whether these costs were
really worth the changes that they tout as so significant
not to mention the ongoing fear that these changes might
be reversible in a heartbeat, due to corruption and bad
government, when the US and NATO forces completely
pull out of the region.

Malia and Sasha are the loveliest girls anyone would
ever hope to meet. If I feel sorry about something
concerning them is that, because Barack is and will
have been President, they will, probably, never be
able to live an undisturbed life with so many media
hovering around and with so many pathetic and
idiotic and brainless facebookers and tweeters,
who criticize, insult and blurb nonsense first, and,
if they are able to think or accept advice from other
people that can think, apologize later...

France, closely following the United States, seems to be
suffering from a scarcity of young, energetic, politically
clean and enthusiastically active socially party membership
that would be dynamic, forceful and courageous enough
to make a convincing case for sidelining the dinosaurs
that have been tried and have failed to deliver
. Thus,
unfortunately, both countries are witnessing the sad
recycling of tiring and depressing super old, or, in any
case, too old and too comfortable to have a stake for
a real change, guard that attempts to run again and
again or, else, tries to exercise undue influence with
the goal of squeezing in their cronies and/or their
family members and associates... There is a sign of
political decline and lack of appetite and dynamism
in politics everywhere, perhaps a sign a cynicism...

Enrique Pena Nieto is also not convincing. But, contrary
to Spain, Mexico is not a State where Law has even the
slightest pretension of existing
. Corruption, illegitimacy,
crime and extortion of unprecedented proportions by
any standards, developed, developing or underdeveloped,
mean that only a revolution and a very heavy handed
approach can save Mexico of its continued plight and
its being a land of lawless exploitation of the masses
by the political, economic and trafficking cartels of
all kinds that operate in collusion, only pretending and
giving lip service to democratic ideals and the popular

Spain's Rajoy is not convincing any more. Of course it
is the case that not all politicians in Spain are corrupt.
But if, say, the percentage of the corrupt ones is even
10%, this is clearly, by developed world standards,
utterly unacceptable. And, of course, no one will ever
know the exact percentage, since that is, unfortunately,
the inherent nature of political and economic corruption,
but, nevertheless, the reports emanating now and again
from Spain, a State with one of the highest official
unemployment figures in Europe, and with a heavy
excruciating unemployment burden upon the youth,
are not encouraging at all. Radical solutions are
needed when the political elite does its own bidding,
regardless of the popular mandate, and when the
democratic and judicial institutions become enslaved
to the interests of the political and economic elites.

Bravo to the Greek Navy and to the Frigate ``Ydra"
and its Crew for saving hundreds of lives and to the
City of Ierapetra in Crete for taking the initiative to,
at least temporarily, welcome and provide shelter and
alleviate the pain and stress of the emigrants of ``Baris".
Humanity is not an option, but a heavy responsibility
and a duty, and the Maritime States, with Greece and
Italy at the forefront, have been, for a long time and
consistently, taking this responsibility, morally and
legally, very seriously.

You may have ``done your job right", but you can
have neither a ``clean conscience" nor be at peace
when, regardless of the circumstances or the context,
you have deprived another human being of his life,
having absolutely no right to do so, even if the
degenerate authorities that you serve assure you
that you do...
All the questions that you posed to Stephanopoulos, you
should have asked of yourself before pulling the trigger
Moreover, we do not need gang ho cops giving seminars
to other cops on how to shed more blood and, of course,
preferably of those that do not look like them...

Of course, the jurors know much more about the individual
case than we do and it would be unwise to doubt their honesty.
How am I supposed, though, to expect peace and calm by
the people whose communities have been historically, repeatedly
and consistently, discriminated against and wronged, when the
professionals who are trained to keep peace and calm and,
allegedly, to serve and protect, choke people to death for
selling contraband and shoot to kill underage kids in play
grounds and shoppers in stores for brandishing fake guns,
and, in generally, seem, in many cities, to have a gangster
mentality and to be very poorly trained indeed for the tasks
at hand? Or how could I respect President Obama's reminder
that we are a Nation ``built on the Rule of L
aw" when we only
remind ourselves of this adage when our poorest and our
minorities' despair and anger boil over because of the
defective application and enforcement of this Law and
do not repeat this adage or keep it in mind when these
injustices actually occur to avoid the hurt, and prevent
the anger and the protests from occurring
? The President
would do better to remind us of our responsibility to Uphold
the dearest Law he and all of us are always ex post facto
calling upon and referring to, and to Apply it Equally and
Uniformly in times of Peace, rather than remember it only
when the authority of an Unjust and Discriminatory State
and the Power of its Apathetic Authorities are threatened...

No State should be ``horrified" when deals are stricken or when
bilateral or multilateral agreements are signed between any
other States or Regional or International Organizations. All
States should be worried and concerned when discussions
are not taking place and agreements are not reached. These
are the situations when tensions arise, conflicts escalate and
Wars erupt. Correct and adjust your outlook and your
perspective. Encourage negotiations and arrangements
everywhere, no matter where or whom in between. That is the
World all of us want to live in and that is the World that
we would like our Ministers and our International Diplomats
to tirelessly work for. BRAVO U.S., BRAVO IRAN, BRAVO
Move forward!

What a barbaric behavior, when a State cannot punish the
real culprits, undertaking to destroy the livelihoods of the
relatives left behind
. If such acts do not fall into the category
of retaliatory acts against innocent civilians, severely
condemned and strictly prohibited under ``the laws of
humanity and the dictates of public conscience", then I do
not really know what does...

I have three messages for Congress:
1. Lawlessness is worse that Idleness, but Lawlessness in the way
    Rep. Boehner means it is better than Idleness.
2. When the Parties want to take some action to get things done,
    they should not bargain and change their minds about the
    substance of the process or hesitate to move forward solely
    as a  means of retaliating against other acts they do not like or
    solely as a means to play a political game. They should go
    ahead and push for implementing their ideas regardless of
    ambient climate. E.g., if Congress has a better plan for
    overhauling immigration, they should compose it and put
    it forward for voting immediately, regardless of what others
    do that Congress may like or dislike. REFRAIN from getting
    bogged down by connecting unconnected issues and processes.
3. Use the procedures of the House and the Senate according
    to the SPIRIT of the Constitution; not according to the letter
    of the Constitution. If you keep shifting the interpretation
    and the intention of the political processes, you will lead the
    country and its political system to a Constitutional Crisis,
    where the object and purposes of the Constitutional Articles
    will fail to produce the originally intended balance and the
    originally envisaged harmonious and fruitful interaction.

It is a biased and unfair practice by comparison to allow through
the Courts companies and organizations to opt out of a provision
of a law on the grounds of personal beliefs and convictions while,
at the same time, denying foreign companies the control over
the manner in which their products are used on ethical grounds.

What is it that makes it so difficult in Palestine to understand that
the Right of other People to Worship their Own Gods is as Sacrosanct
and Inviolable as the Right to Worship One's Own and that the Right
of other Mothers and Fathers to Enjoy their Sons and their
Daughters in Peace and Safety and See them Develop and Flourish
is as Inalienable and Fundamental as the Right to Enjoy One's Own?
The fact that crimes are committed daily and that violations of
Civilians' Dignity and Privacy by the occupation forces are a daily
occurrence does not give one the right to attack innocent civilians
and to destroy the lives of innocent people trying to go peacefully
and harmlessly about their daily functions and business. Hamas
has been losing grip and, in their blinded hatred, have lost touch
with the Political Reality that, if any change is to occur, this will
happen only when the Palestinians will be able to make a compelling
case and a convincing argument that their goal and will is to live
side-by-side and in Peace and Cooperation with Israel, enjoying
in return all Privileges due to a Civilized State.

The Leaders in the U.S. Congress and the President have to realize
that they have not been elected to participate in a soap opera with
continuous personal drama and mutually targeted intrigues
. They
have been elected because this Country faces multiple critical
challenges that need focused hard work, a thorough analysis and
a level of cooperation and synergistic spirit to resolve. They must
move forward and work to ensure a safe and better future for the
next and the upcoming generations. Leave aside bickering for its
own sake and cowardice, due to electoral fears, and boldly take
the necessary decisions and the steps needed to fix shortcomings
and solidify a better future for all.

Is this the education and acculturation level of the medical personnel
in India? Are these the people who have taken, or are going to take,
the Noble Oath of Hippocrates to aid and serve People to the best of
their abilities as Professionals? India has been continuously shocking
the World Community with the barbarous acts of parts of its people
and with an obstinate adherence to outdated traditions that do not
measure up to Contemporary Humanist Values and Humanitarian
Principles... Once more, SHAME on INDIA...

``Let's embarrass these two prigs in public!"  ``Tony, he's tickling me to death!"        
``S**t! He mistook me for a Ukrainian!"

Providing the entire independent report for inspection may be in the
interests of FIFA, but it is not in the interests of the game anymore.
The only relief for the sport would be a complete dissolution of
FIFA or its implosion by the National and Regional Associations
supporting it
. It has lost all credibility, it is damaging more than
serving the game and needs to be replaced by a completely new
Authority, more decentralized, with very strict, independently
monitored controls and safeguards against needless personal
enrichment of supranational soccer bureaucrats and against any
form or gifts, payoffs, rewards and other forms of corrupt practices.
Disband FIFA NOW and start afresh with new rules.

Putin, what is, in your informed opinion the greatest infraction and
the gravest breach of International Law? Redrawing the Borders
in Europe by force, through unilateral declarations, or the imposition
of economic sanctions without Security Council Authorization?
Think before uttering nonsense and, thus, further undermining your
authority and embarrassing yourself even more in the eyes of the
International Community.

Για τον Ψυχάρη το αυτονόητο ήταν να βγάλουμε τον Μεϊμαράκη
Πρόεδρο της Ελληνικής Δημοκρατίας. Ντροπή και καληνύχτα,

Alexander, may the Light you shone with your Intelligence
illuminate your path to the other side for this one last time.

Governor Snyder, in addressing the issue of the apportionment of
Michigan Electors in the Presidential Electoral College, you must
take into account the fact that individual States having differing
and various methods of apportionment may result in a highly
tilted outcome that fails to accurately reflect the wishes and choices
of the American Voters
. Thus, even though I understand that this
decision is delegated to the State Governments, in my view, it is
desirable to have a National Meeting of States' Government
Representatives to coordinate Policy and Decision Making to
avoid having Multiple Standards operating in various Regions
for potentially reasons other that serving fairness and clarity
and supporting the Public Interest.

If there is truth in the allegations that Juncker helped establish a
1% corporate rate of tax evasion in Luxembourg, when half of the
E.U. youth's talents are being wasted through unemployment in
the South, then Juncker should resign or should be dismissed
immediately from his post. Corrupt officials that are serving the
interests of, and are enslaved by, big corporations have no place
at the helm of E.U. structures that are supposed to serve the
interests of the majority and tame and control the greed of special
interest groups.

In the same way that we did not need an official Papal Bull or an
official Vatican apology to know that the Catholic Church tortured
and slaughtered hordes of innocents during Inquisition or that the
Catholic Church contributed to much suffering and chagrin, for
political and economic gains, during the Crusades, the ``revelations"
that the Founder of the Mormon outfit was ``married" to multiple
women and was sleeping with the underage daughter(s) of some of
his close associates should not come as a surprise,
except to those
that are either naive or pretentiously proclaiming intentional
ignorance to absolve themselves of the responsibility to acknowledge
Historical Truth and of the pain of having to face and confront Its
obvious and subtler implications.

When the President returns from Asia, he needs to explain to the
American People why it is not possible to create a single Pacific
Forum for a Trade Agreement including the U.S., China and
Russia and there are, instead two different ones appearing.  At
first sight, it seems like those meetings are not there to bolster
genuine Inter-State Cooperation and Free Trade, but rather to
serve subtle political and other non-transparent goals and this
should be resisted. We need to know and Barack has to explain.

Minister Zarif and Secretary Kerry, move forward! Nuclear
issues are important, but there are many many other, more
important and urgent, issues that the two States and the E.U.
can cooperate on, and must cooperate on, in making the World
a better place for all and a much better place for all our Children.


I prefer Unity and Cooperation to Divisibility and Friction in
International Relations. On the other hand, I deeply cherish
and respect the Right of Peoples to Self-Determination and
strongly stand behind the Right of Catalans to hold a public
Referendum and determine their own Future if they so wish.

I am deeply ashamed on behalf of the Greek and the Cypriot
Governments, on behalf of the Greek Prime Minister and on
behalf of the Cypriot President. I am wondering how they
would have felt had a leader of a friendly to Greece or Cyprus
State visited Greece in the height of an oppressing dictatorship
and proudly posed and made important bilateral or multilateral
agreements with the dictator and his regime
. Shame, of the two,
primarily on the one boasting to be the birthplace of Democracy...

I hear we are sending troops as trainers to Iraq, supposedly in non
combat roles, and the claim is that the Iraqi Government is going
to be held accountable to pay part of the costs
. I have humongous
misgivings and this operation leaves me completely puzzled: It
just sounds that the worst, most corrupt and most divisive regimes
of the planet, after creating a mess through their incompetence and
their own wrongdoings, are calling on the United States to send our
own kids over again and bail them out, with the promise to reimburse,
at least partially, for the mission. So, are our United States Forces now
Perhaps, we should not ask difficult questions to discover why
Barack's popularity has been steadily eroding, nor do we have
to analyze other petty domestic political reasons when Grand
Failures and Questionable Decisions in Foreign Policy stare one
so stunningly straight in the eyes...

Another group of aged and dilapidated old rockers who did not
hear the whistle blowing on time and lost the right exit...

We lost Paco de Lucia earlier in the year and now our Flamenco
is mourning another one of its Greatest, Manitas de Plata

The United Kingdom should avoid rashing into any irreversible
actions regarding its future within United Europe. It might be
that its present status makes it more profitable economically and
more palpable socially and politically to exit the Common Polity.
On the other hand, the Union was never meant or conceived to
be a structure where States would come and go and come back
and go again at will, depending on current affairs. The Union,
on the contrary, was meant to be a permanent movement for
perpetual Cooperation between States and for solidifying a
delicate feeling of Fraternity that is so easy to tip off equilibrium
in a Continent that has suffered more competition, strives,
balances of power and wars than enjoyed solid unopportunistic
friendships and joint prosperity for all, based on multilateral
decision making. The U.K. belongs to a United Europe and its
People and its Governments should deeply understand the
ramifications that an exit would signify, the side-effects that
it might cause and the messages it would send, together with
the injurious influence to the spirit of Unity and Fraternity in
the Continent. Unity, in a World that has become more complex
and challenging to navigate alone, and where the interests of one
are fast and steadily becoming the interests of all, is needed more
than it did when the visionary founders started the project
several decades ago. So, now would be the time to apply and to
join for the few States that are still out; not the time to allow fear
and disappointment misguide Member States to opt out.

Even NPRs Leila Fadel cannot bring herself to call Sisi a dictator
in her reports...
What a sham, what a pariah State Egypt has
become as a civilized society and a Lawful Polity, in just a few
months, under the thumb of a new brute. And to think that this
is one of the first cradles of civilization as we know it...

Even in its traditional areas of excellence the Mother Continent
has become mischievous and corrupt
. Why do Leaders, Atlhletes
and other high profile representatives of Africa choose to follow
the worst examples imported from the developed world rather
that being smart and choosing the best practices while replacing
the undesirable ones, like corruption, monarchies and dictatorships,
lawlessness, cheating and doping, with traditional African
values, including the well-known communal spirit, collective
effort for community betterment and well-being and fair play
in competition?

by direct or indirect legislation in Europe (or anywhere else) ever
The Germans remember what happened when those started
piling up in the interwar period and the Hungarians and the Czechs
remember what happened when those started piling up during
the intensity of the Cold War. NEVER AGAIN!! We want neither
the former nor the latter situation to arise ever again.

One could possibly wonder why Staten Islanders are so desensitized
when it comes to the threat or use of force against the psychological
independence and the bodily integrity of a journalist by an elected
, why they consider brutes innocent until proven guilty and
why, even at the suspicion of corruption while holding public office,
they do not revolt and despair, but instead they seem to feel it is all
business as usual. Was not, however, Staten Island one of the primary
hangouts of people like Carlo, Big Paul and Johnny? If I do remember
this correctly, it is not so surprising after all that people, who, barely a
generation ago, were exposed to these habits and other comparable
methods and techniques for resolving problems, are such blatant
jemenfoutistes when it comes to all kinds of serious and less serious
crimes and corruption...

The Israeli Political Establishment trying to give lessons of Political
Courage and methods of Handling Political Complexity to Swedish
Politicians is tantamount to the Axis Powers offering advice to other
States on how to best apply the Geneva Conventions...

Another shameful situation in the Mother Continent seems to be
coming to an end. Will we see at last an African Spring with all
People in the States of the Continent wrestling democratically
and peacefully the fate of their States and of the entire Continent
away from the post-colonial oligarchies and monarchies and
dictatorships and placing it into their own hands? May the new
struggle succeed; the Continent needs new political attitudes and
urgent radical political, social and economic reforms.

Bravo, Barack! Whether the Organization is called OAS or Alba,
when the meetings foster cooperation and fraternity, our United
States should be there and should encourage everybody else to
be there also!!

NPR Morning Edition had an investigative report on the performance
of the Red Cross in the response to the Hurricane Sandy disaster
. It is
true that our Aid and Relief Organization System World-wide needs
a fundamental radical reform. As a good first step, they should stop
sending out to potential donors these misleading and uninformative
statements ``84 cents out of your dollar go for the cause", whatever
that cause might be and however successful that cause might be served
by the organization, and they should include, instead, two simple and
well-understood lists: 1. The salaries in decreasing size of the top 50
highest paid bureaucrats of ``charity" in the organization and 2. A
similar list of the percentage of the money spent on the cause that
actually goes for aid and relief (i.e., spent actually aiding people
affected by the calamity) versus the funds going for salaries of the
officials and the workers coordinating and administering that relief.

A medical worker going to the epicenter of the Ebola outbreak to
help is admirable, courageous and commendable. A medical worker
coming back home and insisting that, because (s)he is somehow of a
special providence, should be exempted from the application of
precautionary medical safety standards, designed by experts to
prevent the spread of the disease, is neither wise not considerate
to his/her fellow human beings and citizens, nor does it send a
favorable signal on the purity and sanctity of one's motives for
going to the epicenter and helping other human beings in the first

As if the CDC and the doctors had not created enough confusion
and frustration by shifting, altering, stressing and relaxing the
guidelines daily, now we have IGNORANT POLITICIANS and
interfering with the
extremely serious and extremely sensitive process of fixing and
abiding strictly by set guidelines and procedures, according to
the best medical knowledge and expertise available, to minimize
transmission, infection and casualties and to maximize care,
treatment and survival rate. IGNORANTS, STAY AT BAY
and let the experts do their work unperturbed and without
outside nonmedical astrological advice and interference
When are we at last going to attain perestroika and glasnost in our
medical system and in the way our medical standards are adopted?

Bravo also to Uruguay!! Especially for having established
and having strictly adhered to Presidential term limits that
are clear indicators of a well-functioning Democracy and
the predominance of the Rule of Law. BRAVO, Uruguay!!

Tunisia is not only the birthplace of the Arab Spring, but, also,
its only survivor. BRAVO, Tunisia!!

No Freedom for anyone responsible for murdering David Pearl
or any other Journalist on Assignment. The World needs to know,
the World must know.

David Cameron and his Government are right to be outraged
at being asked without sufficient preparation and without a
proper plan to find in a few months' time such a huge amount.
It makes one wonder whether the Brussels bureaucrats have
any idea at all about how annual budgets, appropriations and
State finances work
. For a country to be adequately prepared
to pay its dues in a timely manner, huge fluctuations should
be avoided at all costs and, if they do occur, they should be
advertised and discussed well in advance of the bill's due date.

The People of the Balkans want their leaders to meet on a
regular basis to further improve and solidify regional ties
and cooperation and the fraternal bonds that tie together
all People in the region
. It is utterly unacceptable for people
in countries that are bordering one another, that have been
frequent visitors and hosts of one another for such a long
time, to behave in a way seen at the Belgrade Stadium last
and it is utterly unacceptable for two neighboring
States' politicians not to have visited each other's State
on an official capacity for 70 years. It is high time that a
regional informal summit or a ``get together" at the Prime
Ministerial and Foreign Ministerial levels took place at
least once a year to deepen bilateral and multilateral
relations and widen cooperation at all levels.

From way East to way West, why is it so difficult for public
officials and Ministers to show respect for the public resources
and to avoid squandering, or sometimes even plainly looting
and misappropriating, public funds?

Bravo to Cuba! From this tiny Island in our neighborhood,
a ray of hope amidst so much greed, selfishness, terror and
catastrophe in the World, rose again... I sincerely wish and
I hope that the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of
State will direct the United States Forces contingent that is
on site dealing with the outbreak to establish a link and
a close cooperation and mutual support with the substantial
medical resources that Cuba has been making available.
Those that are still against lifting the embargo and easing
tensions with this Neighbor of ours should take a close look
and, without prejudice, appreciate these most humane,
most positive and most constructive contributions whenever
they occur, and try to follow these Noblest of Examples
wherever they happen to originate from.

I am not sure whether to call courage or call stupidity the
insistence to keep interviewing and keep conversing with
people and ``leaders" whose words and statements make
absolutely no sense
from a common logical viewpoint...
Perhaps Steve Inskeep would do better spending his
journalistic skills talking to people that can inform, rather
than to people that have a set biased agenda and will not
deviate, regardless of how blatantly one exposes the
inconsistencies and the contradictions innate to their
statements and their claims..

May Mr. Cameron be reminded that domestic legislation cannot
be used to tramp legal obligations under International Law
. Thus,
by the relevant provisions of the Law of Treaties, the only legal
recourse for the United Kingdom is to either follow the provisions
of the E.U. Treaty and orderly wthdraw from it or renounce it
with all the legal repercussions that this would entail. It is high
time that the British either did one or the other and put an end
to continuous whining and disrupting the European Progress
towards full Integration and Unification. European Unification,
based on a shared vision of a common Cultural and Historical
Heritage and a common Destiny is a process that, regardless of
short-term problems and the accommodation of short-term,
narrow-minded electoral pressures, is to the utmost benefit and
advantage of all European States and of all European Citizens
and the best, and perhaps sole, way to ensure a deepening of
Peace, the feelings of Fraternity and the spirit of Cooperation
among all States and all Peoples of the Continent in perpetuity.

If Erdogan wants to be consistent and seeks to maintain high
political standards and uphold Democratic principles, he should
not only boycott dictatorships, such as that of Sisi in Egypt, but
he should also boycott States that make a travesty of Democracy,
such as Afghanistan. Double standards do not speak well for his
professed honesty and hint at ulterior motives...

Bravo to President Carter for doing the right thing with respect to
the new dictatorship in Egypt and closing the offices of the Carter
Center there. Despite his Center's having attempted to do its best
in a region of our World that is geographically so close to the
birthplace of Democracy, there has been fierce resistance to the
adoption of Democratic Principles by the Political, Military and
Social elites that, justifiably, fear they will loose their excessive
Wealth, their excessive Privileges and their exclusive grip in the
Decision Making Process and that the outrageous opportunities
available to them for self profit and self aggrandizement on the
backs of the majorities of the local populations that find themselves
plunged in intimidation, chaos, violence and persecution will be
decisively checked and significantly reduced.

Bravo again to Pope Francis for focusing the mission of the Church
more in relation to the needs of contemporary Humanity and for
relaxing mindless, firm and choking adherence to doctrine. In the
same way that Law looses its authority when it is applied to its
exact letter, without discretion and without consideration of special
needs and special circumstances, fruitless, unhelpful, unconstructive
and obstinate adherence to ancient doctrines (many unrelated to
the original Church and only adopted much later) should be put
aside and given a secondary role, subservient to the primary purpose
of serving Humanity's spiritual and material needs and the Noble
Goal of being a continuous force in pushing towards Peace,
Fraternity, Cooperation and Compassion in a modern World
whose leaders and whose Citizens need those reminders so often.

I wish everyone would listen or read carefully and would deeply
and honestly undestand, comprehend, absorb, process and take
to heart and embrace the statement made by Phil Mortillaro on
Morning Edition: ``Well, you do your best kid, this is what you
do. But honestly your best, not just a B.S. best. And even if you
fail, it doesn't feel that bad."
Half of us, at least, would have to
change course and, unfortunately, many among us would have
to make a U-turn.

In our United States we have seen over the last few years this
extremely worrisome phenomenon of high-level, very highly
compensated bureaucrats that are in charge of disasters and
they are doing an excellent job when disasters do not hit,
that are in charge of security and they are doing an excellent
job when no attempts at security breaches occur, that are in
charge of servicing the President and they are doing an
excellent job when no threats to the President arise and that
are heading centers of infectious diseases and are doing an
excellent job when no outbreaks of infections take place.
Under the aforementioned circumstances, I am totally
convinced that I would also be able to be extremely successful
without the relevant expertise, especially under a particularly
lucrative compensation package and especially if I was allowed
to provide a lame excuse and/or jump ship when some
contingency, for which I had been responsible and had been
paid for a long time to prepare readiness against, hit, and my
questionable performance during non-critical times gets
revealed to the public that shoulders the bill...

And the cycle of idiocy and stupidity continues on and on...
Hamas fires rockets that mostly liter the Israeli countryside.
Israel kills by the thousands, in a proportionate reaction, and
destroys homes, tunnels and infrastructure, in a proportionate
reaction. And the stupid and idiot International Community
watches with open-mouthed senility and pockets over and
over the identical costs of ``rebuilding" after identical and
senseless repetitious destructions of the identical infrastructure
and the identical lodgings that it had paid to rebuild many
times before... Congratulations to everyone involved for
your nonexistent intelligence, your magnanimity and, above
all else, your utter and senseless stupidity.

A monumental shame for Kenya and for Africa, one of its worst
moments in its continuing repulsive record of corruption and
mismanagement, especially in the hands of the ``families" of the
``heroes" of the Independence Struggles, and, also, a monumental
embarrassment in the nascent record of our International Criminal
Court and, by extension, of our International Law System.

He has been one of America's and the World's most significant
musicians and entertainers of the 20th Century and, certainly,
one of the Greatest Blues men of all time. But the ``Blues Boy",
the King of Blues, should have retired some time ago
. Everyone
should realize that no-one is irreplaceable, no matter how
gigantic their statures and how seminal and irreplaceable
their contributions. And retiring is beneficial to both society
and to themselves, since giants can serve public life and the
arts under so many other capacities, besides their ordinary
jobs and their life-long professions.

Leon Panetta talked to Rachel Martin about balancing the Security
needs of the Nation, on the one hand, and the Political, Social and
Ethical Values and Principles that the Nation has traditionally
abided by and held as nonnegotiable, on the other. His answers were
so illuminating, in fact, that, had we fed the Delphi Oracle with some
hallucinogenic leaves and asked the same questions, we might have
learned even more...

Acapulco, Mexico: The name might not be Islamic State, but
it is a State within a State and its brutality equally terrifying
and its crimes equally heinous and utterly shocking. This is
the Local Police in the Mexican State of Guerrero. All tourists
everywhere should boycott Mexico and especially Acapulco
and Guerrero. No foreign exchange to brutal murderers
of Students and criminal syndicates and fraudulent police.

What happened at that hospital in Dallas is unknown. If I had
to make a guess, I would go for a collateral damage situation
of the lack of geographic education of the Nation. Any person
would tell a story of the average American (not of every
American, but the average American), when hearing about a
foreign land, e.g., Greece, Kenya, Hong Kong, Yemen etc.,
either lowering his/her eyes or avoiding eye contact altogether
because of these toponyms having exactly the same meaning
and significance as the Milky Way-nyms of Planet 9428. So,
it is very likely that some nurse had heard about Liberia,
Sierra Leone, Guinea etc, in the news, but these were just
meaningless names in the air. When (s)he saw the patient's
information form and where he had traveled to, this was also
just another inconsequential and insignificant geographic
name that meant very little and, therefore, no alarm was
raised. Finally, the man got sick with Ebola and everything,
especially the meaninglessness of the Geography and the
insignificance of where everything else was, suddenly changed...

Bravo to Oslo for withdrawing from the bidding to host the
despicable 21st Century Olympic Games.
To all States of our
World Community: Isolate the plutocrats in Lausanne. The
Rogges and Rogues of this earth have enough yachts, and
then some, to die  and rot in and need not an extra penny more
from public funds, nor an iota of reverence or respect. All
States and Cities of this Earth whose Citizens have self-respect
and respect for their fellow Human beings and would like
to do something worthwhile should, instead of enriching
with their money the Lausanne criminal syndicate, to redirect,
at least part of what they had been planning to spend, to
Geneva: Donate to the UNHCR and UNICEF, to take care
of the educational needs and the nutritional needs of some
of our World's less fortunate kids and to shelter, protect and
feed the innumerable refugees of regional conflicts that our
mindlessness has been creating in alarming and terrifying
numbers in the new Century, a century that is, unfortunately,
developing to be one that will leave a shameful memory in
the History of Humanity, unless a radical change of course

It is interesting that Indians would call an ``elderly person with
wisdom" someone who tries to attribute a deep rooted sexism
and a deep rooted tradition of animalistic behavior and laxity
in controlling sexual impulses and strong naturalistic urges to
women not being ``properly" dressed or not following closely
enough India's traditions. With such wisdom and such men
recognized as ``elder and wise", alas, no changes in mentality
and behavior, nor much improvement in the standards of
sexual education and behavior should be expected in India.

Ms. Pierson reassured us that, instead of worrying about the
safety of the President and, by extension her own performance,
we should get out and have a couple more in his health and
visit the ladies or the guys, according to predisposition, and
behave politely and understandingly towards uninvited guests
and intruders alike, exactly as the Secret Service, setting a
good example, had been doing. But, as we refused to listen
to her just admonitions, she decided to lead herself by example;
so she is taking sometime off to have a couple more in the
President's health, visit the guys or the ladies, according
to her predisposition and, perhaps, open her compound to
admit a couple of uninvited guests for festivities as the case
might turn out to be... After all, no one can tell, but everyone
should have rested reassured that nothing suspicious would
have ever occurred again under her watch.

On the one hand, I am happy that the man got a life sentence,
since, on principle, I am firmly against the death penalty for
many and various reasons. On the other, I cannot stop thinking
and firmly believing that, if a black teenage kid had gotten
irritated against a middle-aged affluent white company playing
their music too loud and had killed one of its members, the
gallows would have been awaiting fast and furious...

Even though I recognize that the problem of sexual assault has
been either on the rise or better recognized than before, I predict
that, with this new California law, the only way to have safe sex
in California will be by wearing a hidden camera and a mike.
Otherwise, whenever a partner feels uncomfortable about the
event and the situation escalates to a legal dispute, regardless
of what actually occurred, it will be her word against his and
vice versa, not to mention, on top of that, various deviations
in understandings and in interpretations that may occur under
such circumstances, especially so when the people are extremely
young and extremely inexperienced and extremely frightened.
In a nutshell, do not do it or, if you do, be wired.

Unfortunately, we are again witnessing another despicable case
of a daughter or relative, having nothing to do with the creation
of the profitable art, science or product, feeling a sense of
entitlement and coveting the earnings of the creative father
or relative
. My opinion is that judges should shut the door
loudly and clearly to relatives that are leaches and have not
contributed to the creation and should allow the creator to
appoint an estate authority or estate manager of their own
choice to take care of affairs in the event of their passing,
irrespective of familial relations.

The adventures of Carmen Segarra in an environment of banking
abuses and banking unaccountability, where the Feds and the Justice
Department have shamelessly failed in their role to hold high level
execs accountable and have only punished banks, by having them
pay fines out of the pockets of investors and the public, has made
me actually think of a huge irony in the reporting system.
When a whistle blower reveals something suspicious or wrong
in the records or practices of a company and its executives, the
media and public unavoidably label that person as a somehow
``disgruntled employee" on personal accounts. My reaction is,
understanding that the actual truth depends on the specifics
of a case, that for an employee to turn against her own company
and to find the courage to speak out against the system that has
been feeding him/her, (s)he must be perceiving that something is
very wrong with the practices of the company or with the
system in which that company operates. How is it possible
for someone reaching that conclusion to be expected not to
be a fully disappointed, disillusioned and disgruntled employee?
Therefore, we should stop using mindlessly a phrase that portrays
such an obvious state of mind in the event it refers to that it is
really completely meaningless under the circumstances used...

Bravo to Pope Francis for clearly reminding Bishops that, since
their livelihood depends on ``serving God", when they are accused
of serious violations, they should be cognizant that they are also
``accountable to God" and not rely solely on Papal Clemency or
only on lay lawyers and lay or ecclesiastic courts for protection
and exoneration. Priests always should remember that they cannot
use God to live luxuriously and hide from God when allegations of
abuse of children and flock arise.

Only Erdogan has the necessary guts in the world of politics to
call a dictatorship by its real name. Bravo, President Erdogan,
for having the courage and the audacity to call the Egyptian
pseudo-president Sisi what he actually is. It is pointless for one
to exercise needless niceties and to apply unwarranted courtesy
to distort reality and deny the universality of the rule of law.
The Egyptian elections were a scam by any standard and Sisi
is a dictator that has suppressed and that keeps suppressing
the opposition and that muffles free expression and dissent.
What he actually calls himself or how he is actually called by
those that wish to remain friendly or, simply, to suck up to
him is irrelevant. A tyrant is a tyrant by any name.

Bravo to the Cypriot Coastguard Authorities. By responding
effectively in the rescue of the Syrian vessel that was stranded
at High Seas, not only did they fulfill to the utmost their
International obligations vis-a-vis Humanitarian Law and
the Law of the Sea, but they also held to the highest pedestal
the age old noblest Traditions of the Maritime States, always
bound by and acting beyond the call of duty to help Sailors
and Passengers from peril in the High Seas. WE CALL for the
Mediterranean to become a bridge between Africa, Europe
and the Middle East. WE DEMAND that the Mediterranean
stop being a cemetery and a shameful expanse in Humanity's
record between Africa, Europe and the Middle East.

Unfortunately, as the BBC reports, one of the major issues was
the sharing of appointments
. Coupled with the reluctance of the
losing candidate (whoever he might have been) to concede defeat,
it sounds like the fight here as, unfortunately, in most unstable
and underdeveloped countries, was over who was going to attain
enough power so that he and his cronies, relatives and associated
militias will be able to shave off, for personal, familial and clan
enrichment, loans from the international community and other
public funds at the expense of the majority of Afghans and at
the cost of the long term well-being and stability of the country...
The deal avoids imminent conflict, but, without change in the
political culture and in personal attitudes, and the uprooting of
corrupt traditions, practices and institutions, no progress is
possible and the medium- and long-term political and military
prospects are indeed very dim.

I have tried very hard to remain cold-headed and keep my cool.
But do take this clip off the air. Pakistan may have had elections,
but elections do not make a regime, by default, a democratic
regime. Arguably, Pakistan has never been a democratic State.
This misinformation, presented under guise of valid research,
is terribly misguided and, I am afraid, if taken uncritically, may
lead people to believe all kinds of questionable and dubious things.
If a report presents neither facts nor well-supported and well
documented opinions, then the report has no place in informed
academic debate and, a fortiori, no place in, allegedly scientific,
but, in reality, ridiculously pseudo-scientific, journalism.

I urge, Governor Snyder, when you reduce benefits for the poor,
do not think of yourself and the other affluent Michiganders that
do not need those to survive. Think, instead, of those families that,
even with those benefits available, have a hard time making ends
meet and, only in extremely good faith, if there is no alternative
or if the money is to be used for something more valuable and
equally nonnegotiable, allow yourself to support and sign
legislation to that effect. The weakest should be foremost in our
minds. The strongest have their lawyers; they do not need
additional assistance.

Scotland had its say. The Scots debated vigorously and inspiringly,
in an exemplary way, and the Scottish youth of 16+ showed a level
of poitical maturity that silenced all its critics and that, independent
of the result, gives hope for Scotland's and the U.K.'s and Europe's
and the World's future. The overwhelming NO vote showed that
the Scots chose to remain part of the United Kingdom and to
remain, in an uninterrupted way, part of our European Union and
all other International Structures, Forums and Organizations.
Scots, in the way they organized the event, the way they debated,
the respect they showed and the decision that they made have been
remarkable, unparalleled and inspirational and, of course, we do
welcome their decision and appreciate their membership and their
contributions, political, cultural and economic, to their Region and
to our World Structures.

Today we have the referendum for the Scottish Independence and,
also, the Parliamentary Elections in Sweden. Curiously, but happily,
they both feel like domestic elections and not affairs taking place
in some far away lands. I think that Globalization, with the ensuing
benefits of Fraternity between people of various nationalities and
close Cooperation between their governments for a common destiny
and for the benefit of all, is here to stay and feels exhilarating.

Ηχηρό ΝΑΙ στην πρόταση Θεοδωράκη για τον Συνταγματολόγο
Νίκο Αλιβιζάτο στην εκλογή Προέδρου της Ελληνικής Δημοκρατίας.

With all due respect to a very successful Secretary of State
and to a successful Vice-President: Be gracious and use good
judgment. We need younger people with a much greater stake
in the future of this Country and in the future of this World
and this Universe to take over. Instead of running, step aside
and help the Party to choose wisely a team of young, sensible,
informed and flexible politicians, with big hearts, wide open
ears and measured mouths to succeed the old guard and give
new hope to the younger voters and the ones yet to come.
Your generation has completed its work and performed,
both with successes and with failures, its duties and has
fulfilled its obligations. Pass the torch on.

Alexander Lukashevich's words about ``gross violations" of
international law
are strong reminders of the Russian actions
in Ukraine and of the Soviet actions in Czechoslovakia and
in Hungary and reify those words spoken at the Assembly
long ago that, when the Russian representative speaks again
of the high ideals of sovereignty and non-intervention, in the
minds of the World's Citizens the word ``Hungary" will be
echoing over and over again. Only now Putin has generously
added ``Ukraine" to the list as if there had been a need for
an additional embarrassment and an additional disturbance.

The United States will not cooperate with one tyrant, but is
begging for the help of another...

We are all joining our hearts and our minds with Pope Francis
in his hope for an end to all those serious regional conflicts that
are needless
and costing the lives of so many of our fellow human
beings, destroying the dignity and the happiness of so many
others and putting the most innocent and the most vulnerable,
including young men, women and children in jeopardy and in
harm's way through no fault of their own. Mentally, we are at
the end of our wits, because almost anything doable has been
tried before and nothing seems to help in improving this human
temperament and tendency to engage in fighting to resolve
problems and nothing seems to be helping decisively in
alleviating the plight of the people suffering. The one thing
that has not been tried is providing education and opportunities
to those participating in the conflicts so that they become more
inclined to make different choices, but it is not at all clear if and
how the international community might attain this lofty goal...

Bravo to the Israeli Officers. It has to become apparent to the
Israeli Citizens that they are the only ones that can make Peace
happen. The World at large can exert pressure on the Israeli
politicians to negotiate in good faith with their Palestinian
neighbors towards a two-state solution, a viable agreement
and a lasting Peace and Cooperation, but the politicians will
only act convincingly if and when they realize that, choosing
otherwise, is going to cost them the electorate's trust and
confidence, their votes and, as a result, their elected positions.

Another huge embarrassment in the President's address,
especially since the President hails in half from those parts
of the Mother Continent, was his celebrating ``the successes"
of the strategy in the Horn of Africa. To all informed, of
course, the conditions there are appalling, but they are
neither an American failure NOR ANYONE's ``SUCCESSES"
to be celebrated or mentioned by any measure. They are a
stark, loud and embarrassing reminder of the legacy and
of the crimes of colonialism and of the incompetence and
the failures of post-colonial liberated Africa. Instead of
chartering a different refreshing path, the African post-
colonial administrators took the place of its white plunders
and exploiters and milked their own States and their own
Continent and their own fellow Peoples of the Continent
out of their most precious resources and out of their wealth
mostly for personal enrichment, exactly as colonial era
companies, outfits and conglomerates had done, and
gave back to their societies very little, which, compared
to the expectations dawned after liberation and after
independence, amounted to NOTHING at all...
From an intelligent, informed President,
we are indeed expecting more.

The President outlined yesterday, in a short address to the Nation,
his Administration's strategy in dealing with the Islamic State.
I dare povide some help in clarifying one of his statements, whose
intent I think I understood, but which I found to be bizarre. The
President said about IS that it is not Islamic. I am wondering
whether the President would ever dare say that the European
States, England, Spain, Portugal, Italy, at the time of the great
atrocities, the slave bazaars, the Congo massacres, the South
African apartheids, the Inquisitions and ensuing summary
executions without recourse to the proper protections under
Law and the Crusades, that needlessly cost the lives of hundreds
of thousands of innocent people, were not Christian, even though
many of those activities were conducted with the blessings and
occasionally the sponsorship of the Catholic and other Churches
and religious institutions. I think not. In reality, one has to admit
that IS members are Islamist, but that, despite Islam having
gone through enlightenment and humanism around 1000-1200,
these particular Muslim groups are historically and culturally
ignorant and in need of a new enlightenment and a new humanist
reconditioning. IS has somehow lost touch with the History of
Islam and its Roots that connect all of us modern-times
Westerners and modern-times Middle-Easterners with the
Eastern, the Egyptian, the Greek and Hellenistic and the
Roman Cicilizations through the bright Persian and Arabic
Minds of Philosophy, History, Law, Mathematics, Physics,
Medicine, Religion and Art of that Great Muslim Era.

The Signs of the Times: An old group on an old product of an
ultra-rich, but not ultra-innovative, company in an undisclosed

I heard that the Michigan legislature does not assign very high
priority in looking into and in passing legislation that would
secure appropriate measures to ensure that women can plan
properly and take care accordingly of issues arising with the
insurance coverage of birth control medication. I am wondering
if those legislators show the same lackluster enthusiasm and
the same indifference and adopt the same delaying tactics
when facing those issues with their own wives and their own
daughters and in their own personal lives. If that is not the
case, and I bet it is not, why jeopardizing the health of other
individuals outside their families? Where is the sisterly and
brotherly feeling in the Michigan societies that our Governor
has been so much touting in all his State stops and all his
proclamations? Is it just talk for political gain without any

Providing additional rights to a group of people cannot infringe
on the rights of others outside the group, unless those rights cause
harm to the outside members. Similarly, denying rights to the
members of a specific social group is justifiable only if allowing
those rights causes harm to the members of another social group.
If those principles are accepted and properly abided by, then the
argument, heard over and over again in public discourse and in
the media, that providing same-sex rights to those citizens that
are inclined to take advantage of them infringes on the religious
rights of other citizens inside or outside the group, is absurd
and, by inception, null and void.

Θερμή παράκληση στον Βήμα FM: Μη βγάζετε στον αέρα
άρρωστους πνευματικά ανθρώπους που τα έχουν χάσει.
Είναι αγένεια και προς τους ίδιους και προς τους ακροατές,
αλλά το χειρότερο είναι δημοσιογραφικά αντιδεοντολογικό
και αντικατοπτρίζει αρνητικά εσάς τους ίδιους και το σταθμό.

Bravo to the Brazilian Football Authorities that take their
responsibilities in combating racism and discrimination and
their powers to that effect very seriously and pursue a firm
and uncompromising strategy. No person, in football or
elsewhere, that is trying to do his/her job and are trying to
give their best in sports or in other professions or endeavors
should face in our Globalized Earth of Human Values of
2014 what Goalkeeper Aranha went through because of the
mindlessness and bigotry of another individual.
Unfortunately, our societies sometimes celebrate and glamorize,
under cover of comedy or jokes or otherwise, uncontrollable
and thoughtless ranting, instead of criticizing it and making
it an example to avoid, opting instead for careful deliberate
thoughtful analysis preceding expression.

Παρ' όλο που ο Νεράντζης ακολούθησε σε ανεγκεφαλιά
και απερισκεψία τον ψευτο-εθνικιστικο-ρατσιστο-φασίστα
Νικολόπουλο, χρήζει κάποιου σεβασμού λόγου της ευρείας
εμπειρίας που φαίνεται να κατέχει σε παντός είδους
κτηνοβασίες και άλλου είδους ιδιωτικού περιεχόμενου
διαπροσωπικές και διακτηνιακές σχέσεις...

I followed the report about Calatrava on NPR. I guess,
as in all else, one has to separate the creativity of an
architect and the aesthetics of  his/her creations, at
which, clearly, Calatrava excels, from the arrogance,
propensity for corruption and embezzlement, lack of
contractual discipline and insensitivity to the public's
sentiments, in which, clearly, Calatrava excels also...

Bravo to France for its decision about the Mistrals. What
an irony it would have been if one of the major parties
that guaranteed, after World War II, that borders in the
Continent should not change by war ever again and
one of the World's most valuable Organization Security
Council's Permanent Members in charge of maintaining
Peace and International Security had gone ahead and
rewarded a blatant and shameless aggressor with
amphibious warships and we were to see the two new
Mistrals carrying more troops on European soil to
further inflame an unjustifiably chaotic situation.
European Citizens demand this loud
and clear
. Pass this message on to Putin.

May the Phoenix and its crew sail safely and be successful
in their endeavors and their operations. And may other
similar private initiatives, in cooperation with State and
Coastguard Authorities, join its mission and succeed in
alleviating in the medium term human suffering and
diminishing the loss of our fellow humans' lives. But,
in the long term, Governments and NGOs in the Mother
Continent and in Central America, with the support of
the developed countries, must do more politically, socially
and economically so that our brothers and our sisters
there do not need to embark on perilous journeys and
to abandon their homelands to be able to sustain themselves
and their families and to secure a better future for
them and their children.

I think it is unjustifiable, simplistic and sends the wrong
political message to the Middle Eastern Citizens when
Western and U.S. officials, especially the ex-Secretary of
State and Presidential hopeful,  clamp together and
equate popular movements, such as the Muslim Brotherhood
and Hamas, with irrational, inhumane and purely terrorist
groups, such as the Islamic State. Even though, because
of the nature of the conditions they faced, both Hamas
and the Brotherhood have, admittedly, employed militant
or military techniques, the first has its roots in the
fundamental right of Palestinians for Independence,
Self-Determination and Statehood and their suffering
and deprivation of Freedom in the hands of an insincere
interlocutor that negotiates in bad faith with the only
aim to perpetuate the status quo and desensitize
World opinion by exposing the World Citizens over
and over again to the same unacceptable techniques
in the hope that at some point they will be seen as
acceptable. (A strategy doomed to failure, of course,
since no child that sees relatives killed or his/her home
destroyed at a delicate age is likely to take the high
road of Peace and Conciliation, especially in such an
explosive environment and under such contentious
conditions.) The Brotherhood sat quiet and oppressed
for a rather long time and, when Democracy at last
arrived, they attempted to participate in a, mostly,
decent and constructive way, given the conditions that
had developed on the ground. The fact that they were
ousted and another dictatorship, more brutal and
more monarchical than the preceding one, emerged and
was supported by Western Governments sent another
abominably skewed mssage to the Middle East about
the honesty of our Democratic preachings and our
own true intentions. None of these two situations, if
one tries to take a step back and judge them from,
an, at least semi-objective if not completely, objective
point of view, leads to an identifcation or a leveling of
either the goals or the intentions or the raison d'etre
or the means and the techniques or the political stance
and political maturity or the humanity (or lack thereof)
or the respect for fundamental human values and human
rights between these two groups, on the one hand, and
the group that has declared itself the new caliphate, on
the other, which is incurring the derision and contempt
of the majority of the Muslim World Citizens themselves.

I would have written down something to the effect that it is
unacceptable in the eyes of the international community for
our blue berets, the best our political humanity has ever
had to offer, to be attacked and held hostage
, but what
effect could such a statement possibly have when it is
addressed to primitive uncivilized brutes that are beheading
investigative journalists and killing innocent civilians at
whim because of their personal beliefs and convictions?

Δυστυχώς, ένα από τα μεγαλύτερα προβλήματα της Ελλάδας
του σήμερα είναι ότι σημαντικό μέρος της Ελληνικής κοινωνίας
αποτελείται από κρυπτο- ή φανερο- εθνικο-ρατσιστο-φασίστες,
στυλ Νικολόπουλου, που ανοίγουν το βρωμόστομά τους να
πετάξουν την κάθε απερίσκεπτη κοτσάνα πριν προλάβει να
λειτουργήσει η ελλειπής και βραδεία εγκεφαλική τους ουσία...

Why are there shooting ranges where pre-teen boys and girls
are trained in using automatic and semi-automatic weapons?
Is there part of the Citizens of this country that think of those
as toys or hobby-engaging creations for the underage and the
immature? Where is our country heading to? Which flawed
mental analysis is the one allowing us to consider this acceptable
and to regard such outrageous parental dereliction as natural
and appropriate?

After the 21st century fiasco in Ukraine, Putin is now
instituting an Index Prohibitorum for Hollywood Movies...
One might have thought of this as funny and ironic, since
the only way that one may realize the poor quality,
repetitiveness and shallowness of Hollywood productions
is by watching them... On the other hand, I would not be
surprised at all if it was soon revealed that the Russian
Leader has some kind of a brain tumor affecting his
intelligence and his behavior. Otherwise, his recent
political moves, based on an antiquated perception of
Europe and the World, with Cold War-type attitudes
and a mentality of divisibility and hatred, are hard to
explain either from a domestic or from an international

There is rarely a program on intelligent radio that suffers such
a fast decline in content and quality as Fresh Air in recent times.
Incessant repetitions and passage from intelligent and informed
guests to primarily pop culture and entertainment that leaves
you at the end of the show in exactly the same mental state,
if not worse than, as when you start listening. Unfortunately,
from thoughtful and trying analysis of science and politics,
the host has chosen the easy path of superficial analysis and
subjective meaningless chat with pop personalities that feed
us entertainment of questionable quality every evening and
from whom we would be happy to take a break during a
constructive day and afternoon.

It would be a great misfortune and sudden drop in the prestige
and the reputation of the Presidency of the Hellenic Republic
if the conservative MP Meimarakis, with his dubious past,
was to be elected to the Office
. Needless to say, from Psycharis
one might not have, justifiably, expected a more thoughtful or
more constructive suggestion...

Shankar Vendantam, who reports on ``light stuff" most of the
times, in reporting on the Fields, again missed a couple of, possibly,
very important points. First, to get a Fields medal, one must have
reached zenith and, therefore, being expected to continue at the same
frenzied pace might be too optimistic. Second, from an outsider's
perspective, various areas of mathematics may seem substantially
different. At the core, however, the underlying common foundational
logical principles and the fact that mathematicians working in
powerful stimulating universities get exposed continuously to many
ideas outside their main fields of interest make work in other
subfields much more natural than it was suggested in the report.

Gene Simmons and a significant part of showbiz:
  1. Empathy for our own; indifference and apathy towards others;
  2. Speak first, think and apologize later...

Since some of the Russian lorries entering Ukraine are
sparsely loaded, this must be a sign that they are needed
there for some purpose other than carrying their cargo.
Is it perhaps for operations in Ukraine, or, potentially,
to withdraw Russian personnel and equipment present
on the ground, when departing, without having to explain
how it was found inside the country in the first place?

If you are a police officer listen to this and do not dismiss
it as something remote and unrelated to you. We hear so
many comparable stories and, apparently, there exist so
many more that never see the light of publicity, that, at
one level or another, it affects you and it affects us every
single day, and it adversely impacts our humanity, our
fraternity and our solidarity.
Above all, make sure to HELP ALL CITIZENS and
PROPORTIONATE FORCE relative to the alleged
crime committed or the threat posed VIS-A-VIS ALL
CITIZENS. We, as a community, and as the taxpaying
citizens and the paying customers, ask for no more, but,
also, for no less.

Also, Melissa Block of NPR's ``All Things Considered"
spoke with a very thoughtful veteran officer of the Denver
Police Department in an interview about diversity in the
Police Force; an interview, in my view, worth reading
and/or listening to

I am wondering what Che would have said, had he been
alive and visited another communist veteran who is
focusing on grandiose Stalinist public works instead
of on enhancing the living conditions of the people that
Che ached so much about. Should, perhaps, the old, and,
seemingly, forgetful, revolutionary pay a visit to Cuba
and Fidel to remind himself not to forget what the real
focus must be, if the left and progressive parties are
destined to make any difference whatsoever, as compared
to the traditional slavish obedience to, and service of,
magnate financial interests on the backs of main-street,
or, should we, in this instance, rather say, main-stream?

I hear all these ``expert" analysts and ex-generals strongly
supporting heavily arming the Kurdish forces to counter
the threat of the IS in Iraq. What nobody says or, even,
perhaps, thinks about is what would be the next day like,
if and after the IS forces are decisively defeated by the
Kurdish forces
(as, of course, no one had thought what would
have been the next day after the toppling of Saddam Hussein).
If my instinct about the Middle East is correct and my
knowledge of the past and recent history instructive enough,
what will happen is the surfacing of a de facto totalitarian,
aggressive, discriminating and, most likely, single-person
centered, Kurdish State, emboldened by its dominance,
irradiating with confidence and empowered by its, at least
temporary, foreign support and unwilling and/or unable
to negotiate lasting agreements with its neighbors, ensuring
resource sharing and regional stability.
Will whatever situation is destined to succeed the present
state of affairs be satisfactory, or another huge mess on the
lap of an already turbulent region and in the hands of an
exhausted U.S. and a tired International Community?

In our country, we ignore problems of race, we ignore
problems pertaining to the training of our policemen,
many of whom have the mentality of ``harass and
arrest" rather than ``serve and protect", and we further
aggravate highly sensitive and stressful social conditions
by enabling rampant vigilantism through ``carry and
conceal" laws, with dangerous and unpredictably far
reaching consequences, until the situation erupts out
of control into a major crisis
. Why are we, as a society,
unable or unwilling to look carefully at, and to take care
of, many of the relevant issues, that we know have a
substantial influence on our well-being and that of our
fellow citizens in the ordinary course of events, rather
than idling and waiting, first, for major outbursts of
discontent and violence before reminding ourselves
that something must be done and before recognizing
the urgent need for political, social and economic

How ironic that the ``crusades" of Bush, Blair, Cheney and
Rumsfeld are directly, albeit belatedly, responsible for the
depletion of Iraq from its historically longest lasting Christian
minority populations. The message could not have been any
clearer. Political idiots, THINK before you act...

The Cuban Government should free Gross on humanitarian
grounds and grounds of imbecility and mental senility. Mr.
Gross still insists that he had not been given adequate warnings
that going to install illegal telecommunications equipment
in Cuba would land him in trouble... Oh well, even amateurs,
let alone a person involved in that kind of business like
himself, know very very well that such acts are a NO NO in
States like Cuba or North Korea, where relations with the U.S.
are terse and, where because of substantial democratic deficit,
there is an abundance of suspicion for any surreptitious and
undeclared activity...

It is extremely disappointing that, despite his pragmatism
and his record of doing, mostly, what is conducive in creating
a welcoming and comfortable atmosphere for residents and
for businesses in the State, the Governor of Michigan has
repeatedly failed to instruct his narrow-minded and unduly
stubborn and unjustifiably fixated Attorney General to focus
on issues that make sense to fight for in our State, rather than
in jumping from litigation to litigation with the sole goal of
destroying equality and combating equal rights for part of
the State's residents
. Governor Snyder, why spending so
many resources - money and effort - to try to maintain for
a little while more an anachronism that is so unsuitable for
a modern, developed, vibrant, open-minded and welcoming
State to still have in the books?

Bravo to Presidents Gauck and Hollande, who sent, once more,
the strongest of signals that Europe has one, and only one,
option in moving forward: Peace, Fraternity and Cooperation
among its States and among its Peoples
, together with a firm,
unshakable commitment in respecting and supporting the
highest of all human and political values, such as Freedom,
Equality and Democracy. I so much wish that President Putin
had understood where the Europe of today stands in this
regard, and had avoided undue interference with the affairs
of Ukraine that has caused the Eastern part of the Continent
to go back several decades both politically and militarily.

I see those three Presidents meeting the U.S. President and
talking idealistically about shared responsibility. My thoughts
are that they are leading their countries, they must be earning
very generous salaries and all other boosts and freebies that
accompany high offices and power and it seems like the only
accomplishments that they have to show in return are that
they have tolerated and presided over ideal conditions for
trafficking, smuggling, producing, importing and exporting
illegal substances and other materiel and, in general, have
sustained environments in which gangs thrive and illegal
activities are rampant, whereas youths that are trying to get
some education and adults that are trying to earn an honest
living are forced to follow the coyotes and the convoys of mass
exodus for the north.
How, being such a dismal leader and having presided over a
total economic, social and cultural collapse and failure, do
you even have the audacity to show up at the White House
and discuss with a President, who is dealing as best he can
with a situation that your governing incompetence has
contributed to? And how do you even dare, with a straight
face, criticize in the media actions taken by others, instead
of publicly apologizing, acknowledging your incompetence
and ineffectiveness and asking for forgiveness from the families
and the children in your own countries for, after having secured
their votes, and, based on them, lavish lifestyles for yourselves
and for your own families, so abysmally having let them down
and, in effect, abandoned by passing on responsibility for
them and their plight to others? I would have been, to say
the least and state the obvious, humbled and ashamed, and
would have had, long ago, resigned, instead of parading my
sorry ``leadership" in foreign capitals...

He will not be retiring, like many overcompensated bosses
and employees in our United States, because the ``heart is
still beating, the employees are still cowering", even though
the brain might not still be very well functioning...

Governor Branstad, Iowa has an exceptional reputation
for inclusiveness, tolerance, fraternity and civility. When
one has the means to help people, especially kids in need,
it is a human duty to do so. Political arguments necessarily
take a back seat. Whether something needs to be done,
what it is that needs to be done and how it is to be
implemented about this complex existing problem is a
separate issue, distinct from providing shelter and comfort
and helping the people that are already on the ground in
need of necessities and of other assistance. By taking a
firm stand to continue Iowan's long-established warm-
heartedness and open-mindedness, you honor a precious,
unique and valuable Iowa tradition and rise up to your
fellow Iowa Citizens' values and ideals of Humanity and
Fraternity. Iowa has done it, Iowa can do it again; do not
destroy something unreconstructible and irreplaceable.

To Hamas and Israel: Do not make the issue of the
safety of flights to and from Tel Aviv Airport a
pawn in your conflict. You've spilled enough local
blood and you've created enough local human
suffering and you've generated enough local
human tragedy by your bilateral rigidity and
intransigence. It is time to lay down your arms
and to negotiate a Treaty to solve the bigger issues
and to bound yourselves not to kill needlessly ever

This piece on NPR's ``All Things Considered" is even funnier
than a specially written satirical piece of comedy. I was so much
entertained, not only by the content, but also by the tone in
Robert Siegel's voice, that, for a second, I was tempted to look
at the calendar to find out whether it was April 1st...

I am shocked by disbelief... Why are police even using
force when absolutely nobody, themselves or anybody
else, is in danger or threatened?... Are they not trained?

To the Israeli State for their persistence in settling,
instead of negotiating Peace in good faith, that, on
the ground, actually translates into thinking that,
for a few square miles more, the lives of the youth
on both sides are worth sacrificing, and to the
blinded ethnic Russian Ukrainians that think that
the future of their children looks brighter under
the thumb of the Kremlin and under Russian
domination, this Hymn goes: ``The Price of a Mile"
by the Great ®, who are, obviously, more
adept at learning from the Continent's past and
at peeking into its future:
The Price of a Mile
©Music: Brodén ©Lyrics: Brodén/Sundström

Hear the sound of a machinegun
Hear it echo in the night
Mortars firing rains the scene
Scars the fields that once were green

It’s a stalemate at the frontline
Where the soldiers rest in mud
Roads and houses all is gone
There’s no glory to be won

Know that many men will suffer
Know that many will die
Half a million lives at stake
At the fields of Passchendaele

And as the night falls the general calls
And the battle carries on and on
What is the purpose of it all?
What’s the price of a mile?

Thousands of feet march to the beat
It’s an army on the march
Long way from home
Paying the price in young mens lives

Thousands of feet march to the beat
It’s an army in despair
Knee deep in mud
Stuck in a trench with no way out

Thousand of machineguns
Kept on firing through the night
Mortars blazed and wrecked the scene
Gone are the fields that once were green

Still a deadlock at the frontline
Where the soldiers die in mud
Roads and houses since long gone
Still no glory has been won

Know that many have suffered
Know that many have died
6 miles of ground have been won
Half a million men are gone

And as the men crawled the general called
And the killing carried on and on
What was the purpose of it all?
What’s the price of a mile?

There’s no price for a mile

The Vatican, with its wealth and its influence, could
potentially play a much more substantial role in
alleviating the emigration problem from the Central
American States into the U.S. than mere pleas and
wishes. But, I do not think that the Pope has realized
the power and persuasion that he wields over the
population in those areas. Why not sending teams
of professionals and volunteers on the ground, not
to prosyletize and sway the youth to go to church,
but to create a secure, safe and stable environment,
in cooperation with local authorities, and to provide
sustenance and motivation for the teenagers to stay
and attend school and set higher educational and
professional goals for their future, rather than
being forced from such an early age to embark on
extremely dangerous adventures to provide for
their families and to seek better lives.

If you are not trained sufficiently to use potent weapons
that other States provide, DO NOT USE THEM. It is
a fine line between legality and illegality and it is very
likely one may cross it, if they do not know what they
are doing and how to use those weapons. Also, do not
inhibit the investigations. An International Crime has
occurred and knowingly disturbing evidence or
intentionally impeding the investigation by blocking
access to the scene of the crime is unlawful under
International Law. The situation in Ukraine has burst
so much beyond reason that the ICC has to indict and
to press charges regardless of whether the political
situation readily allows for the apprehension of the
political, military or militia leaders, officers or war-
lords responsible. Do not let again something like this
pass with minor civil litigation; send a clear unequivocal
message that this behavior is not acceptable in the
Europe of 2014.