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I am interested in pretty much everything, especially history.

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  • Natalie Portman says, Enough!
    • "I recommend you learn Arabic. You’ll need it." misterioso
      I would love to learn Arabic; right now however I am studying Italian. But Arabic is a beautiful language; rich culture. It would be wonderful to speak it. Life is short though, so who knows. Also, I don't live in Israel, I live in the United States. I am just an observer of the conflict, not a participant in it.

  • Global outrage mounts over Israeli killing of Yaser Murtaja, from 'NYT' to Federation of Arab Journalists
    • “You don’t send a penny to Israel, do you? “
      Of course not - it’s a rich country with free healthcare and all sorts of social services. I figure, I will let Gal Gadot and her billionaire husband give money to charity. I actually don’t even particularly like Israeli culture although there are some good things there. Mondoweiss has alerted me though to the continued pathological hatred of Jews even in the comfortable United States. Therefore, my views are shaped simply by desire for self preservation.

  • How 1967 changed American Jews
    • "So, only leftists are thoughtful, and everything else is propaganda. "-
      I am thinking to attend the People's Summit in Chicago this weekend. We have a lot of rich people in New Mexico, and I think I can be the voice of the people. I would like to learn how to get elected. For example, I could start my career with a City Council seat in Albuquerque. I would like to run as a democratic socialist: rich people will pay more in taxes, we will provide free healthcare and education including day care, we will break up the banks, and fight the neoliberals. I will even promise to save the Palestinians in the process. I think New Mexico is ripe for my election.

  • Here we go again! Netanyahu disputes Trump administration, urges him to 'shatter Palestinian fantasy' about Jerusalem
    • just google stocks plunge. there’s a lot more where that came from - annie
      No point in arguing about stocks. If you feel that you understand in depth the reasons for market moves, make investments on that basis, become rich, and then you can make huge donations to Gaza. The thing about money is, you either have it or you don't (it's a number after all), arguing about it is futile. At any rate, I have decided to vote for Bernie in the next election. I have enough money to retire early, but what stops me is the cost of healthcare (and possibly college for my son). Since Bernie will make these things free (and apparently many others), I could theoretically retire in my forties and spend my time reading and travelling (rather than fixing accounting systems). So we are on the same page on that too. I wish you luck in making money, as the people of Gaza need it more than us.

  • 'Jerusalem' on Gaza TV set is as close as many Palestinians will get to real thing
    • "Catalan, minds do change. Things fall apart. Systems have finite lives". - mag
      Minds change when interests change. When I was a young, with nothing, from a poor place, I believed in equality and free travel (cause I kept getting visa rejections). Now that I became rich, I voted for Trump because I want to keep my capitalist gains. It's not what we tell each other, it's what we do. And that is always self interest. That's why "movements" based on solidarity like BDS always fail.
      Plus, the only thing that falls apart is the individual being. The universe keeps going indifferent, and according to modern physics with no end (I know, beginning but no end... Weird)

  • Trump's 'America First' budget puts Israel right up there, too
    • "Not that you give a darn about them. Screw em, let’s subsidize a racist war mongering state instead. - " oldgeezer
      I am actually against aid to Israel as it is a wealthy country. However, the healthcare debate is of a totally different caliber. It is incredibly controversial with passions on both sides. It also involves trillions of dollars annually rather than the three billion dollars aid to Israel. As you know, the US is already 20 trillion dollars in debt but that amount is expected to double in the next few years.
      Note that I come from a country that had free and universal healthcare. The quality of health care was awful (unless you were a Communist leader before 1990 and rich afterwards) and corruption in the state hospitals was rampant. Once I had a broken foot in a different city. We had to pay the doctor to treat me and he did such a poor job that my left leg now is shaped different. A sweet reminder of how "free and universal" works in practice. That and having a tooth pulled out without anesthesia when I was 12 or so which made me scream and faint to the great amusement of the dentist (and my mother). We had to be tough, you know, ready to fight the imperialists and rotting capitalists.

  • UN agency labels Israel 'apartheid regime'-- and Israel likens organization to Nazis
    • Strange, only about half the world’s Jewish population are in Israel, .where have they gone to? - talknic
      Roughly half is in Israel, the other half in the United States. About 5 percent everywhere else. I suspect Western Europe is slightly more tolerable than the eastern part but overall the trend is clear. I do love the United States while at the same time believing that patritotism is a refuge of the scoundrel.
      As for me defending Israel, why in the world would I do that? They have their billionaires and army, how stupid would be for me to defend a powerful country? Perhaps Gal Gadot's rich husband should defend it, he has got a lot more vested. What I do defend is myself and the few people I love.
      As for legality, I leave this matter to experts like you. I took International law back in the day but was very distracted because of a girl in my class. So I don't know what is legal and what is illegal.

  • Israeli gov't doesn't really want US to move embassy to Jerusalem -- Foxman
    • Anyway, if you need bus-fare home from the library, let me know. Be glad to. - Mooser
      I am really confounded about why you are so hung up on the money thing. I mentioned that I did certain things that made some profits. I still know that Trump is a fraud and a conman. I just also had to protect some interests. So I ended up voting for Trump out of selfishness, honestly, with disgust. At least I don't like the guy. What I find fascinating is that the far left still likes Trump better than Hillary. It's not about me - the fact is that rich people (exclude me if that makes you happy) benefitted enormously from the decision of the socialist left to either not vote, vote third party, or vote Trump. Even if I cease to exist, this still remains the fact - The Bernie crowd proved their point.

    • "Sanders understood it is a systemic crisis".
      Where I live, right in the middle of the country, people seem pretty happy, the shops are crowded. It is not more a crisis now than ever, actually, crime and teen pregnancies are at an all time low. The media do not reflect accurately normal life with their focus on the unusual.
      Four years of Trump with republican congress will be much better for big investors than four years of Hillary. I am greatful for the result of course because I was not expecting tax cuts. I am also still in disbelief; I was prepared for the opposite scenario. That the left decided to give the rich a big gift because Hillary was not good enough is just ironic. I am sure policies will change but YOLO.

    • Did you know “catalan” is rich? He is one of “the moneyed ones.
      True, but mainly because I was lucky. Right place right time sort of thing. Due to my situation I was leaning republican this cycle although I voted for Obama twice. I think that Hillary could not get the far left to vote for her - e.g people like pabelmont, annie, Keith, and many others. People with my kind of money are very few and they mostly don't vote democratic anyway. But the far left staying home or even preferring Trump, basically the Bernie or Bust crowd, that cost her the election.

  • Hell just froze over: the New York Times runs an article saying Zionism is racist
    • My oh my, “catalan” you are quite the rationalizer! - mooser
      Can you please explain? Do you not "rationalize"? Don't we all? You think you are like Voltaire, fighting for justice? But Voltaire was rich, living in Switzerland, friend of kings.
      I wish I could do more for the issues I care about, in ways that are consistent with my character. But mostly, like yourself, I watch helplessly. I don't think your satire has helped change the mind of a single person. It's enjoyable, I like your humor, but so what?

    • No doubt Alberquerque is making plans to meet the needs of those formerly receiving ACA, Medicare, Medicaid/i> and SS benefits. - Mooser
      I am hoping that Trump does not plan to deliver on any of his more outlandish promises. I also want to live in a more humane, kind and caring society. I am actually a liberal person. But the democrats ideas toward big banks and stocks and taxes were just a bit too much for me to swallow on a personal, selfish level.
      Trump is a confidence man with ADHD; Bernie wants to be cutting the heads of the rich. An overall unpleasant situation but they say voting is a duty plus I grew up in a dictatorship so I bit the bullet. Next time I will probably not even vote.

  • Sanders says fight among Democrats is to go 'beyond identity politics' and stand for all working people
    • I just want to thank you guys for agitating against Hillary. I am confident that Trump will be a fabulous president for rich people (like me for instance). Heck, he already has been, just look at the stock market the last few weeks. You rock!

  • It's time for American Jews to recognize they have been duped
    • Avigail,
      Thank you for your reply. In answer, first I don't believe that the the boycotts led to the end of apartheid, but rather internal developments. Secondly, as a rule I don't support any collective punishment by the weak upon the strong, ever. This is not to say that I approve the behavior of the Israeli government, or that most Israelis are not greedy racists.
      Here is the thing, I live in the United States, and I will let you in on a little secret. Most Americans are greedy, intolerant, petulant, and entitled, to a degree that is astounding. However, there will not be BDS upon America for its many sins, because everyone wants an iPhone.
      Even if one could boycott America, I would be against it, because of simple empathy. I have a child and see what it takes it to raise him properly. The goal of BDS is to make essential products unavailable for the average person, the poor and middle class person, of course, because we know that the rich one always find a way.
      I can imagine how I would feel if I lost my job because of BDS or my son couldn't get his type of breakfast bar and threw a fit. I would feel hatred, anger, and a singular desire for revenge. Just what many Palestinians are feeling now. So BDS is just doubling up the number of angry people in a region that's been in conflict since forever.

  • 'We should seize it' -- Obama announces Iran deal as 'new direction' for the Middle East
    • "Rouhani is correct, of course. A win win all around the world. -"
      Absolutely. I have always wanted to visit Tehran, enjoy the rich culture, get a delicious falafel and then while having desert observe a man being slowly hanged without his neck breaking so that show can last longer. What other city provides such entertainment? Bread and circus on steroids.
      Then in the evening, I don't have to bother myself looking for a bad comedy, instead you are guaranteed an hour long sermon by a supreme leader. Facebook, yahoo, Twitter, they are a waste of time anyway, so I wouldn't miss them during this visit. The museum of the martyrs is much more interesting.
      May we all become more like Iran!

  • Michael Oren misrepresents 1971 synagogue bombing that changed his life
    • "there are actually quite a few jews there (in new mexico), you should trying meeting some of them and coming out of the closet. - " Annie
      I know many Jews in Albuquerque, placitas, and Santa Fe. I meet many of them on a regular basis. We talk about this stuff and nobody thinks anything weird.
      As far as your observation that I am paranoid, I doubt it. I am a very successful government manager, have a bunch of people reporting to me and deal with some high level people. I don't pretend I am Christian, I just ignore and dodge the topic. I can tell that some people know I am Jewish but out of respect don't mention it.
      I don't think that everyone hates or cares about Jews, the majority as you say probably don't care either way. However, there is always the off chance that someone does care and has some very negative opinions. That has happened to me - I had a friend who one day out of the blue said something about all these rich Jews. Since I don't know if I am taking to someone with the views of Giles or other commenters here (i.e. Powerful self absorbed Jews who are behind all evil) I prefer the policy of don't ask don't tell.

  • Joining up (Tzedek Chicago, and a Judaism beyond nationalism)
    • "But just between you and me, “catty”, why do you think we are cursed with this self-revulsion - " Mooser
      It's because we are a rootless people. We want to belong, yet out parents told us we are different. We are conflicted, I wouldn't call it self-revulsion. Since life is a relatively short kind of deal we each have to find own way to deal with this condition. For me, seeing how much some people dislike Jews, all this talk of they run the country, they are rich bankers, etc makes me happy to be Jewish. If I can irritate the people who search for a uniform world, for an all encompassing ideology, national interest, Marxism, then I am happy. I want to be different. I want the world to be colorful, crazy and not a grey left wing or right wing or Muslim paradise. I want to be the thorn.

  • 'Obama coffee' is black and weak -- racist tweet from wife of Israel's vice premier
    • "That’s the double standard of yours, catalan" tree
      I don't claim to be perfect. See, for many years I had to be a servant in the great empire so yes, on occasion I am bitter. I had to tutor spoiled brats in math, paint the houses of rich people, wash dishes, make sandwiches, and saw how people without money lived. It ain't pretty.
      I am not proud of my bitterness, and assumed that people have enough sense of humor to take it with a grain of salt. The thing is, I am not saying it with meanness and I don't have anyone specific in mind. Marnie, on the other hand, addressed me with meanness. Also, I have never seen any humor in her posts, so I assumed she is serious. Maybe I was wrong.
      Also, Americans run a huge empire, have a gigantic army, and attract the brightest people in the world. So they can take a little joke about their brilliance.

  • Video: Israeli soldiers violently attack unarmed Palestinian man
    • "BDS is a citizen…and stateless person driven resistence movement - " cigar
      You live in a free country and it is your right to resist, boycott, whatever. It is my right not to boycott products or services because of their country of origin.
      If there is a joint Israeli-Palestinian business venture which brings people to work together, I would be interested in participating. I am a pacifist; boycotts in my opinion are also financially unsound but I don't want to get into technical stuff because it would be boring. That said, I have reasons to think that certain boycotts work only temporarily and then actually strengthen the economy of the boycotted party. I expect Russia's economy to improve significantly not least because of the sanctions. Economics and finance are extremely counterintuitive. That's one reason the "one percent" is, well, rich.

  • Maybe next time it's Arab Americans who will be interned by U.S. gov't -- Rand Paul launches filibuster
    • "Same goes for the identification of Lee Harvey Oswald after the JFK assassination, where they released not only his name but also a lot of details about him. - " Lysias
      In a way I see where you are going. We are about 7 billion people pretty much controlled by 700. I think it's less a conspiracy than a genetic modification which occurred during the domestication of plants and animals. Possibly, agriculture was a result of that genetic change, as how else would kings convince people to till the land when prior to that they roamed free. There had to be some big change in how we view the world to get from leisurely hunter gatherers to a herd.
      I know you have an inkling that it is a Jewish conspiracy. If so, they are choosy. I am educated, speak languages, and am perfectly willing to get rich and powerful. Yet, that phone call is not coming. Mostly I get bills, and even some overcharges. What gives?

  • Settlers Supporting Settlers: Towards an explanation of the US/Israel relationship
    • Keith,
      Your line of thought that Eastern Europeans are essentially fodder, a cushion, and exist only to make Russians feel safe is offensive. As a Bulgarian, I have lived with Rusian colonialism personally. The one party system, the endless pushing of Russian language and culture were very harmful. Russians invaded Berlin in 53, Budapest in 56. Prague in 67. They caused massive social, economic, and environmental damage, I am not even mentioning the so-called republics of the Soviet Union, where settlers were sent, local languages were suppressed, etc.
      You said NATO is taking over Eastern Europe. Well, Poles, Bulgarians, Hungarians, etc want to be a part of NATO. There is a debate on this topic all the time. It's not like they love the west, but they have learned not to trust the Russians. Even Bulgaria, which owes its statehood to Russia, and the languages are very close, is mostly shocked at the invasion of Ukraine. It is incredible that the most loyal country to Russia in Eastern Europe has changed its mood.
      Don't you think that Russians themselves deserve something better? Show trials, abuse of journalists, nationalist propaganda, puppet parliament, sexual intolerance, and a president that's either the first or second richest man on earth? You are against rich people buying offices, well they say Putin is worth 70 billion.
      Why not ask yourself, how did the Russians manage to be so feared and mistrusted in Europe? Even Bielorussia and Kazakhstan are on edge. I am sorry, but you don't see any of Russia's neighbors as human beings.
      I think you misjudge just how deeply Putin's takeover of Crimea damaged things for them. The whole European project has been built on this idea that land won't be taken by force anymore. Indeed, by doing this, Putin seems to have reduced the prevalent anti-American mood. I read both French and German newspapers, and these guys are all in accord on that topic. This is a sea change. The topic of annexation unites pretty much the whole political spectrum in Europe.
      There are some German commenters here, maybe they should weigh in on this topic of Crimea and is it forgivable.

  • Front-page attack in New York Times says BDS movement is driven by minorities' 'hostility toward Jews'
    • Very few people in New Mexico read the New York Times. The only ones that I know do so are transplants from the coasts, generally rich people that are reliving their hippie years in the desert.
      To say that people here don't care about bds, Israel, or any international stuff would be an understatement. Not caring implies that they think about such things. It's more like, these things are outside of their sphere of interest, like some stone on a distant planet.

  • Forgiving the anti-Semites
    • I also like how prejudice against Jews is different depending on where you are. In Bulgaria, the favorite thing was to call me dirty Jew. We were all lacking in hygiene, but Jews especially. Nobody could call us rich or powerful then, although now it caught on. My polish friends would tell me how Jews are not trustworthy people. They never have their back. Here in America, the gripe is that too many of us are in Finance and the movies.
      Jews need to be in good professions, where you can find a job anywhere. China needs accountants, Japan does everyone does. That way, when the next calamity comes, they have a place to go. There are few like Giles here, but so many in Eastern Europe.

  • Palestinian teenager is shot dead at a checkpoint outside Jerusalem
    • "have you ever met anyone from gaza?"
      Not many. I do know that Baltimore is a thriving city in a rich country. I lived in the Baltimore Washington area for a decade.
      Gaza is a war torn territory almost entirely dependent on foreign assistance programs.
      This Baltimore-Gaza stuff is just an echo of the old "proletariat in the whole world, unite". Like Eastern European socialism, it is nonsense.

  • Who cares what Jeffrey Goldberg and Netanyahu don't like about the Iran deal?
    • Oh that’s right. It is a US “weakened and fatigued” - Giles
      I have lived in the United States for 20 years, having worked first in fast food restaurants and then in management in major corporations and now in government. The single most depressing thing I have observed is the incessant complaining of Americans about how bad they have it. It's just a sad comment on human nature that in a country where teenagers have more spending money from their parents than trained doctors do in Bulgaria (an EU country!), people still find it so easy to bitch and moan.
      Let's face it, the vast majority of Americans have it pretty good. Even the poor have more than the so called rich anywhere else.

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