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Total number of comments: 893 (since 2015-03-14 14:32:50)

I am interested in pretty much everything, especially history.

Showing comments 200 - 101

  • 'Oglethorpe stands with Palestine': BDS comes to the American south (Updated)
    • "What I find scandalous is that no one seems to have asked him the question, on the record. - "coccus
      Since you are scandalized why don't you write him a polite email, I am sure he will be glad to answer. Then share the reply and if it causes an earthquake you can take the credit for breaking the story of the century. I mean, if Bernie Sanders is a dual citizen, wow, that would sure be a huge storm. Awful, that.

  • 'NYT' again acts as Netanyahu's mouthpiece -- wrongly suggesting he wants talks with Palestinians
    • "How many generations of Palestinian kids will grow up without ever seeing a Nadine Netanyahu or her equivalent?" Bornajoo
      Well you like to make predictions, e.g. we are winning they are losing etc. How many generations do you think?

  • Corey Robin revisits Arendt's Eichmann in Jerusalem
    • "I’m pretty impressed by the people you know, and I bet they like you just as much as you like them. -" Mooser
      When did I say I know them? I said I like them. Know vs like are different, right?
      However, I know what you are trying to do here. You are "diverting" the attention of Giles, who KNOWS that Jews like us actually network with each other. You see, all this dislike between us is a smokescreen for the naive Gentiles, wink-wink. In reality, we just love one another, like all Jews. See Giles, we just pretend.

    • "It is how I became convinced that you guys are just as warped as me! - "Keith
      No, you can't compete with us. We invented crazy. Trust me. Just be grateful.

    • "Better to be a free man in Albuquerque than a Zionist cadre in New York! - "Keith
      I sure have made a lot of bad, even terrible decisions. However, moving from the east coast to Albuquerque wasn't one of them. After ten years, for good or bad, I am a desert man.

    • "Like who? Philip Roth?"
      Actually I am kind of a fan of Phillip Roth, especially American Pastoral and the Human Stain. When I read Juno Diaz's "Oscar Wao" a few years back I wrote to him and told him that he reminds me of Phillip Roth (I also suggested something about the ending, I was younger and less humble). Juno responded that he is flattered.
      If I may dare, you shouldn't take Roth literally. He writes about the stranger trying to fit in, with big sexual and Freudian undercurrents. But remember, he is a writer trying to sell books. He doesn't actually think like that. It's acting in a sense.
      I was serious about liking Chinese culture.
      That doesn't mean I approve of the craziness of the three gorges dam. I meant it more at he human level.
      As far as liking Gentiles I grew up in a place practically without Jews except for my family. Well I live in Albuquerque so you can connect the dots about how I feel about them. I was trying to say, there is no choice for people like me but to try to integrate.

    • "instead of psychologically remaining a people that chooses to regard Gentiles as irrational Jew-haters" Keith
      I can't speak for other Jews but I do like some Gentiles. Michael Jordan, Steven King and last but not least, Kim Kardashian. See, for any one that looks like her I can overlook the irrational Jew-hatred. Oh, and I am a big fan of all things Chinese.
      Keith, seriously, you need to meet some regular Jews. We are not all bankers or Hasidim. There are some regular people. Quite a few intermarry and those they don't mingle. Gotta read other stuff besides counterpunch.

  • The grotesque injustice of Obama's speech at the Washington synagogue
    • "What do the 20 percent of the population who are not Jewish do on Shavuot? - " James North
      Enjoy the weather, go to the beach, eat the best falafel in he world. Not so shabby.
      I like Christian holidays. On Christmas, everyone asks when I am putting my tree up. They can't tell I am Jewish despite the name. I am told I look German and the worst is I take it as a compliment.

  • JVP to Obama: 'Shared values' means opposing Israel's systematic discrimination against non-Jews
    • "Of course, when the situation is as clear as it is to you in the Taos Pueblo, judgements are simply unavoidable. And you are just the guy to make ‘em. "- Mooser
      Not judging. Just observing. If I was a Taos, I would feel like that too, but I am not. If I was born in the United States and had the opportunities you had from the beginning I would probably have been self-righteous and judgemental like you. Instead I had to deal with a whole bunch of stuff that you wouldn't ever understand. With privilege comes entitlement, you know. You derive strength from membership in the movement. I seek it from within.

    • "the U.S. has changed since then" boomer
      So the kids of the crime syndicate have entered into legitimate business now, investing in public companies. Let's just forget how this money happened. You have to love that the past is gone business.
      Also, please don't call me a Zionist, or any other -ist for that matter. My whole ideology is simple. Be gentle (towards humans, animals, plants, and non living things). Don't judge (all evil starts with self-righteousness).
      I have dealt with all kinds of bullies my entire life. Like all Americans, you wish that the past is forgotten because that makes you feel good. You should visit New Mexico. The Taos pueblo is still thick with hatred and anger. They sell pottery to the white fools but they hate us. The past is still present for them.

    • "if you see some topsoil you want, help yourself." Boomer
      And if you see some nice Pueblo land in New Mexico next to the Rio Grande go ahead and take it. I see that the American morality contingent is out in force. When Americans and Russians speak of land theft there is some very interesting mental pathology. I have no illusions that I live on stolen Sandia land. The best part is that my theft is now perfectly legal.

    • "If the US lets go the handle on the UNSC veto vote, your head will be on the anvil. What a pleasant thought - " talknic
      The security council has nothing better to do than chase accountants in Albuquerque? Well, sounds like things in the Middle East are finally going your way though. The Palestinian people must be really happy these days, surely they know that the conflict is almost over finally.

    • "foundation to bring the hammer down on Israel’s injustices to the Palestinians. - " jwalters
      Yes America and its "hammer" solutions. Cuba, Vietnam, Haiti, Venezuela, Serbia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya - the American hammer has left a trail of justice in its wake. The Palestinians have a lot of good stuff to look forward to, the hammer is coming down. Glad I got out of the way. Clearly better to be in the country that holds the hammer, than the ones that play anvil, thank you very much.

  • Sheesh: A conservative response to the special relationship
    • "citizenship and residency status of Zionist propaganda agents like Catalan and others - "
      I love how easily the veneer of tolerance and liberalism falls and shows the true nature underneath. I actually have no illusions that working to protect the local taxpayers from waste and fraud would bring me any pluses. That's what I am saying, beneath the American mask of "we are so tolerant" is the depth of viscous bigotry. Nice stuff. Dealt with that a lot too.

    • "This so dedicated warrior for Zionist conquest and genocide, " coccus.
      Scary people on this blog. Genocide? I am an accountant. I have never used a gun and like to read.
      Albuquerque is not so dangerous. "Badmouthing" America? Some people call that free speech.
      Thank you for displaying your delusions. Like I said, with friends like these...

    • "Really? That didn’t happen for Palestinian-American Rasmea Yousef Odeh. "
      Again you are willfully misreading what I am saying. The clean record I was referring to is only related to immigration matters. Meaning that if you have been illegal (a civil offense), this is pardoned once you obtain permanent residency. The case of Ms Odeh refers to a different set of accusations that has nothing to do with being illegal. I have never been involved in any criminal offenses in any places I have lived. In other words, apples and oranges.
      As to me being compared to a grandma in a settlement, wow. What a lady... So well acquainted with New Mexico geography, finance, Bulgarian poetry. I am just in a hopeless battle here against anger and evil and for reason and compassion. I have already expressed my conviction that humanity will shortly reach its breaking point and a war of annihilation will follow. So I am enjoying what is left in beautiful New Mexico.
      Also, if I am the best that pro Israeli propaganda can come with, then you have nothing to worry about. The fact is that American self satisfaction (we have come a long way, we are so tolerant, we are so accepting of gays) is in the words of someone smarter, an extraordinary popular delusion.

    • "Which is it catalan. Are you a permanent resident or a citizen. - " amigo
      First I was a permanent resident and then a citizen. When you become a permanent resident, you get a clean record. There is no contradiction.
      I think this illuminates an interesting weakness in human reasoning - we don't think well when we are angry. What happens is we want the person we hate to be wrong on everything. It's also strange how much suspicion you have, how you assume I am lying about everything. What made you so...weary? Jaded?

    • "You are not a citizen of the USA and ought to act like a guest should. - " amigo
      Actually I am a citizen and have spent 17 years working here. Including tutoring and teaching, managing in the private and public sectors. And paying a very nice chunk in taxes as the last few years have been ok to me.
      There are good things in America, mainly respect for education, respect for laws, and great respect for diversity.
      There are also bad things - megalomania and materialism. I bring up the whining because you see a lot of it on this blog. Whatever view you have on the Middle East, let's not reduce it to money. It's not about aid for Egypt or Israel or whoever because American foreign aid in total is 70 Billion, which is the revenues of a mid size corporation like McDonald's for a quarter.
      I just get tired of the whole "Americans have it bad because of Israel" theme. Americans have it pretty good, though not perfect.

    • One's diversion is another one's context. Thus, are Jews greedy, sure, I would agree with that. But let's put it into context, are Americans or Turks greedy? Well, you can make a good case they also are.
      Context is very important, otherwise one can slide into delusion. Thus, are there some pretty bad things going on Israel? Absolutely. I am not OK with people from the West Bank being without citizenship.
      That said, context is important too. Is the general idea of the nation state an unmitigated disaster? Clearly so. What happened that millions of Greeks and Armenians could live in Anatolia for three thousand years, that suddenly this is not possible since the 20th century? Modern nationalism happened.

    • "What a subtle attempt at diversion! “Hophmi” and “catalan” are so clever! - " Mooser
      Can't divert the attention of the enemy under general Mooser's watchful eye. He makes sure his army stays on top-ic. What was Mozart thinking writing all those Divertimenti...?

    • "good patronizing British colonialist to your client state as a spoiled child and you as indulgent father. - " Hophmi
      When I was in retail, we would hire a lot of young people. Poles, Israelis, Russians were all hard workers who didn't complain. Americans were generally spoiled beyond belief. I won't forget this annoying teenager who literally started crying for no reason. She didn't expect that scooping icecream, standing on your feet, and engaging customers is that stressful.
      The spoiled child analogies Americans are so fond of are classic Freudian projection. Never has there been a more spoiled, whining and childish people. Israelis mature much faster and can handle way more stress. I say that as someone who has been very spoiled by living here.

  • 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?

  • Letter from Baltimore
  • Edward R. Matthews
    • "Sirhan was hypnotized into doing whatever he did do. - " Lysias
      Perhaps we are all hypnotized. I always wondered how they convince living and breathing Homo sapiens, the heir to the proud Cro-Magnon, to spend 10 hours a day sitting in front of a screen and counting numbers (substitute dig ditches, cut hair, etc.)
      Now I get it. The question is, who is doing the hypnosis. Let's find them and stop the travesty (One flew over a cookoo nest theme music).

  • 'NYT' obit turns the murderous settler rabbi into a 'contentious firebrand'
    • "but I enjoy playing cat (alan) mouse with him" amigo
      Just be careful how far you go in these games. You wouldn't want to be perceived as "fraternizing" with the enemy. I have seen people let go for less grievous offenses. You know "the movement" is watching.
      And Mooser, think of me as the cigarette for the weary soldier, a "diversion". I was always the imp in class, the comic relief, so unfunny that I was funny. Plus, I would love to do more for your kind. The moose, that is.

    • "I have come to the conclusion that the sole reason “catalan” comments is to attempt diversion." Mooser

      I didn't realize that this is a trial and you are watching our for speculation and hearsay. My view is that people often mistake inflicting pain on their enemies as equal to "winning". They get so caught up in the struggle, their they forget the goal, or the goal itself becomes a travesty. BDS seeks to inflict pain on Israel, but I have not heard a cogent explanation how this leads to happiness for Palestinians. Poorer, hungrier, or less travelled Israelis will vote more moderately? I think that's misguided.
      You comment to show how sharp-witted you are (vanity). You also appear to enjoy bullying.

    • "I would have thought someone as well educated as yourself would know how to spell “cease”. - " amigo
      Well English is not my first language. But I do plan to read Joyce shortly. How about you read the poems of Hristo Botev in original, you know, to level the playing field. Funny that the greatest cosmopolitan of modern Europe came from such a small-minded country. But then again, he spent his life in Paris and Zurich.

    • "Simple. The New York Times tasks itself with whitewashing Israel, Israelis, Zionists and Zionism"
      I thought that the NYT tasks itself with making money, being a public company with stock trading at 14.21 as of a few minutes ago. If it makes money, the stock goes up, meaning that it can raise capital with lower interest rate, then invest into labor and fixed assets, and possibly make more money in the future.
      If there is a niche for another New York paper, besides the Times and the Post, I am sure that someone will invest in it.
      Newspapers are in it to make money. They sell a point of view, taking advantage of a human fetish to see in writing what appeals to us. If you don't like it, don't read it. I don't like liver, golf, the Government of Sudan, and ethnic homogeneity. But that doesn't mean these things should seize to exist.

  • Congress and state legislatures are on the warpath against BDS
    • "frame, but I take it that they are willing to wait until hell freezes over - " Hostage
      Good to know. Well, that might be a long time. I am more of "in my lifetime" type of person.

    • "where governments would impose sanctions and enforce the applicable international laws to bring the illegal situations to an end. - "hostage
      A forecast without a time frame is worthless. When do you think will the illegal situation end? By what logistical mechanism? Do you think that Israelis, exhausted by economic and travel sanctions will vote for Meretz, who will then agree to all terms proposed by Abbas? Or perhaps a right wing govenrment will decide on a full evacuation of all settlements?
      If you can give a time frame, that will be of great help to the Palestinians. For instance, if this resolution happens within the next three years, this would mean that high school students in Gaza and Ramallah may well have their prom in freedom in the next three years. Or is it more like 10 years? 50 years?
      Personally, I think that there will be no resolution of any kind within this century.

    • "In fact they’ve been appreciative" talknic
      I was just saying that a lot of high end items are not sold in stores but on the Internet or by contacting the producer directly.
      And as far as campaigning in public, perhaps Albuquerque is different...I have never observed anyone talk to strangers about politics uninvited. I kind of like that. Given all the racial and ethnic tensions in a lot of places close by, it's nice that people here try to keep their ideas to themselves.
      If that sort of thing works for you, great. May the wind be in your sails. Perhaps you can get enough people to not buy Israeli products, which will undoubtedly make Israel leave the West Bank. Iron logic.

    • "and constantly brays about their “brilliance”." Just
      At least I don't parade my moral superiority or do impressions of Robespierre on steroids like Keith.
      But go ahead, keep pestering people in the grocery stores. With friends like these...

    • "No one can legally stop us from striking up a conversation with other folk - " talknic
      Perhaps that's a cultural thing, but here in the U.S. it is not socially acceptable to bring up Palestine, Kashmir, or Sudan at the grocery store. Maybe on the east coast people do such things, it's been a while. In Albuquerque, commenting on a stranger's purchases for political reasons will certainly mean you are mentally ill. In general, shopping is mercifully a politics free activity.
      Also, the valuable stuff from Israel tends to be technology and equipment, not stuff people buy at the store. If something is best in class, people will buy it regardless of place of origin. People are very cautious about big purchases and want something that will last. I actually know of several product classes where Israel is a leader.

    • "It’s still outrageous, considering that there are nearly two hundred other countries, and that there were no pogroms in the USA that drove them all to join in a flagrantly illegal enterprise " Hostage
      Between 80 - 85 percent of non-Israeli Jews are Americans. Ergo, any group of Jews - criminals, geniuses, or settlers - would have a lot of Americans. Nothing surprising that a lot of settlers are American born.

  • What if the Times had sent Rudoren to Selma in 1965?
    • "Hope we can get the kids together at the next Israeli information ministry family day" JeffB
      That's my favorite part! When we meet up, have a drink, and exchange stories. It's what makes this job worth it. It's always fun to exchange ideas about new avatars. Perhaps next time I can be a Viking from Lappland, who spent time in India. I need to hone my "diversion" skills, lest we forget, it's a war! We are public servants, and with the great pay comes great responsibility.

    • "Donald, that could very well be the case! after all, catalan has not commented on his misspellings at all. - " just
      We are colleagues at the Israeli information ministry. You should have seen the faces of the other agents when I proposed as a front the personality of a Bulgarian Jewish accountant living in New Mexico, working for a municipality, and interested in ancient history.
      They doubted that I could pull it off. But with the kind of money they pay, I learned a little bit and here I am.
      Yes, Giles, we actually do have a secret network!

    • "You’ve got feelings for extinct forms of life, but none for the living and breathing tragedy of the Palestinians -" just
      We will all be extinct within not too long. I am convinced that human greed and obsession with ideas (nationalism, capitalism, socialism) will eventually lead to an all-extinguishing conflict.
      When some aliens eons in the future find us, they will be confused to find a civilization that produced Socrates, Buddha, Newton, and Bach, yet blew itself up over some obscure conflict. More likely than not Nagorno Karabakh, Cyprus, Abkhazia, or something similar will ignite the next world war, just like Bosnia ignited the first one, and Danzig the second.
      You are not seeking compassion and moderation but another nationalist state in Palestine. Humanity has, in my opinion, passed its golden hour. It had the opportunity for happiness and immortality but chose greed and tribalism.
      Mozart lost. Putin won.

    • "sad examples of the Neandertals, mastodons, and short-faced bears. - " Donald
      These are not things to be sarcastic about, they are real tragedies. The fact is that Homo sapiens has presented quite possibly the greatest threat to diversity of life since 400 million years. The annihilation of virtually all large land and marine mammals, the other hominids (e.g Neanderthals), the great apes, forests, and essentially every form of life except domesticated animals and grains is a tragedy of truly galactic proportions.
      The short-sightedness and greed of humanity is truly staggering. Here is a species that actually is quite willing to destroy all life on earth over greed. Israel is not free of guilt but the final extinction will most likely come through a conflict among Russia, China, and the U.S.

    • Bryan,
      Political oppression is universally regarded as immoral? You should mention that to Leopoldo Lopez. Him and the other three or four billion people who live in politically oppressive regimes (China, much of Asia and Africa and Latin America).
      Seriously, "in Denmark" is not equal to "universal". I don't see why you have to bring up delusions to criticize Israel. The same remark applies to all your other supposedly universally disapproved things like ethnic prosecution, enslavement, etc.

  • 'So wait, the Nakba is…?': Listening to Israelis discuss the Nakba
    • “catalan” let me give you a tip. When you comment, don’t put your name, linked to a word-searchable comment archive, "
      you thrive on exposing contradictions. Tell me, if things are so bad for Israel with BDS - your solution - where are the celebrations? When will BDS deliver?

    • What can I say, Catalan, You’ve been everywhere, man. - Mooser
      Icarus. The Greeks figured it all out 24 hundred years ago.

    • "Nobody said you had to answer. But since you did": Mooser
      There is no contradiction. Being illegal is not a criminal offense. So that's what I meant by clean record. The U.S. forgives it if you become a permanent resident.
      Not sure why you are attacking from that angle. Many Americans were illegal first and then became citizens. I am sorry if you have a problem with that.

    • I assume, “catalan” that you have the proper documents allowing you to work in the US, and keep a US citizen from a job? - Mooser
      That's kind of intrusive but yes, I am a U.S. citizen. Clean record and all. Look, there are things I like about living in the U.S., and things I don't. It is obvious that when I say Americans, I mean some Americans. Nobel winners in chemistry are good at chemistry.
      I just get ticked by self righteousness. And these amazing justifications of the U.S. wars on Mexico, which Talknic presents as legally kosher, this laughable "referendum" in Texas that supposedly justifies taking that place over and converting it into a slave plantation, well that triggered me. But no, there are great people here like anywhere else. But you have to admit, there is so much scam and fraud too.

    • "You are an ingrate, at best." Amigo
      I actually don't feel that I owe gratitude to a country, any country. Certain individuals-teachers, friends, managers - absolutely. I just don't buy this concept that I owe something to the American people as a whole. I pay lots and lots in taxes, you know.
      There is a lot of mediocrity here, scams, fraud. In general, people are spoiled, both because they are born in abundance, but also just from residing in such a powerful place. They think they are great because their country is powerful. Like the kid whose father is a prize fighter.
      I wasn't insinuating friendship, just translating the word Amigo. I have no illusions and you have made your feelings about me abundantly clear. Pity, because I like Ireland and wish I had friends there.

    • "Catalan for example has taken to insulting the very people with whom he works and from whose nation he prospers" -amigo
      First of all I work for a municipality, therefore I answer to the local citizens, not the nation. Additionally, I do not hold a political office and have as much right to bitch as anyone else. I am not on welfare; I perform work of decent quality and of technical nature. I don't feel that it is immoral for me to point out flaws in this country.
      I have mixed feelings about America. I am sorry but as an immigrant I will always be an outsider. There are things in every culture that are just not accessible to the newcomer, no matter how fluent my English or how local my mannerisms. Sadly, there are things that I will never be able to communicate to my son, because he is truly American, born here.
      It's like, you can never become Bulgarian, no matter how well you speak the language. There is a set of unwritten cues that are invisible.
      Anyway, if I was an Israeli firster as you put it I could have moved there. I had the opportunity many times but didn't do it.

  • 'For Palestinians, history is never behind us': Family memories on Nakba Day
    • Just,
      Actually the criteria for happiness in the report are real GDP per capita, healthy life expectancy, having someone to count on, perceived freedom to make life choices, freedom from corruption, and generosity.
      Actually, what is noteworthy is the very strong position of the United States, ahead of Germany, France, the UK and many other developed countries. Conclusion - Giles, Keith, Citizen, yourself, and Phil Weiss do not represent the prevailing feelings of Americans. This is one happy place, speaking generally.

    • "It is the only legal way in which Israel can legitimize itself "- Talknic
      Israel is number 11 in they world happiness index, whether their borders are legitimate or not Ahead of the U.S., UK, Belgium, Ireland, and any Arab country (look at how unhappy Qatar is in spite of all their money).
      Clearly, the Israelis are doing something right. What purpose is there for a state than to provide happiness for the citizenry? Personally, I would rather be happy than liked by the United Nations.

  • Rubio calls out Clinton over settlements -- and his biggest donor funds one
    • "dealing with the decaying US regime,"
      Hyperbole to the point of delusion. The U.S. is fifth on the human development index, behind only Switzerland, Netherlands, Australia and Norway. If that's a country with a "decaying" government I shudder to think how Russia or Mali should be described...

  • Putting Israel's cynical humanitarian work in Nepal in the proper context
    • "If individuals have a set of rights which are absolute - " MHughes
      They don't. If you accept a divine being which grants these rights (American declaration of independence) then a prerequisite for them is the belief in said being.
      If these rights are the result of a social contract, then the society in question can decide to severely restrict these rights, rendering them anything but absolute. Thus, most human beings live in societies where criticism of the leadership is not a right. Also, at least half of the world's women do not have the right to choose their partner. This is not a judgement of these social contracts, just an observation. Perhaps the Chinese or the Saudis derive great benefits from curtailing political assembly or religious worship.
      This talk of absolutes does not have a basis in the physical reality. It's an idea born in the minds of intellectuals.

  • It’s time to boycott Ben & Jerry’s
    • I actually worked in the icecream business for a bunch of years (let the Renaissance man jokes begin). Anyway, they employ mainly immigrants, young students, single mothers. Guess who your boycott will hurt. Mr Benjamin and Mr Gerald? Yeah right - I am sure they will be fine in their Colorado villas or whatever.
      If store revenues go down, their shifts get reduced. But go ahead, I am out of this niche now.

    • "Which side are you on."
      I support first saving as much as we can of the remaining species on earth, rhinos, elephants, marine mammals, etc.
      I also believe in a world without national borders. Some type of deal where all govenrment is basically local. It has worked in India on a smaller scale for millenia. A variety of languages and religions can exist with minimal friction.
      I think that humanity may truly flourish and uncover things we can't dream of now, if only people stop worrying and invest resources for fighting each other. Thus, I am not fond of any nationalism, Palestinian nationalism included. It's all a zero sum game, where we all participate and lose. I am not sure how such an idea can be accomplished because the national governments would be horrified. Just think of the trillions of dollars that goes into militaries, embassies, international organizations. Hundreds of millions of people are basically employed in an activity without any positive effect.

    • "I don’t understand how or why you decided to ‘grace’ America with your presence," - just
      I wonder about that sometimes too. The money is good and it's not hard to achieve success, since I come from a non-whining culture (Jewish? Bulgarian?) On the other hand, if I could do it all over again, I probably would settle on the Greek islands. You see, back in the days when I came here, Bulgaria was poor and not in the EU. Now it is still poor but it is in the EU. Freedom of movement and all that. So yeah, I would rather live in Greece but that train has passed.
      About the word narcissism, did you know that the Greeks told an alternate tale about him? He went to the lake to look for his dead sister. In his sadness, he fell and drowned. How unfair it may be to him that we call narcissists people who are in love with themselves.
      Finally, I was unfair to Ameicans. I think the latest obesity study put Mexicans first. Lagging again...

    • Ben and Jerry's look pretty crowded to me in Albuquerque. I guess the huge pro Palestinian community that Annie speaks of here hasn't yet caught on. There is always time...

    • "But perhaps the move here does make some sense – can help with people`s waistlines…" - ivri
      Americans are awful at math, chemistry, history and pretty much every other subject. They do have the largest waistlines though and are best at whining. It should be a consolation for Giles.

  • Settlers Supporting Settlers: Towards an explanation of the US/Israel relationship
    • Has your Russophobia totally overwhelmed your reason and compassion? - Keith
      Not at all. There are all kinds of things I like about Russia, songs, literature, etc. However, their current government is leading them to disaster. The German empire at the beginning of the century was taking about encirclement too, from France and Russia. Yet it was they that violated Belgian neutrality in August 1914, which set the chain of events that led to the disasters afterwards.
      Likewise, I cannot take seriously Russian claims of encirclement because they already control about one sixth of the world's landmass. The vast portion of this territory was acquired by force in the last two centuries.
      I think you are looking for good guys in the wrong place. There are only bad guys in the world today. Everyone is driven by greed, destroys the environment, cares little for anyone. Your buddies at counterpunch see Russia through rose glasses. Putin is a modern day Mussolini, very affable, gets along with the Jews, and dreams of a new Rome.

    • 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.

    • "As an anti-imperialist, I welcome all criticism of the ugly reality and hypocrisy of empire", - Keith
      You don't. You ignore the "ugly reality" of the Russian empire. Expansion into Central Asia, Poland. Then while the U.S. was manifesting destiny, and Prussia was coveting France, Denmark, and all else, the Russians stole a nice chunk of Eastern Siberia. Indeed the Russians took advantage of the weakening of China to expand there permanently. Then the Soviet Union engaged in its own empire policies, and that's how I grew up studying Russian and watching Russian movies. Why are you so forgiving towards Russian empirialism? Do you buy the Russian delusions of encirclement? I mean, did we in Bulgaria need to be obligated to learn Russian so that they can feel safe in Moscow, two thousand miles away?

    • "Are you in finance or in accounting. " Oldgeezer
      Both. But I don't want to get into a technical discussion about how these two are different. Brilliant was said tongue in cheek but that always gets missed in the dreadfully serious world of Mondoweiss. Sometimes posters here remind me of heros in the Soviet movies we used to watch all the time...all that earnestness.
      Anyway, if I was brilliant in finance would I be living in Albuquerqie and posting on Mondo? Hm, let me think....

    • "What logic? catalan’s assertions are shown to be nonsense. -" Oldgeezer
      In the world of Mondoweiss, and most of the "blogosphere", there is only "nonsense" and truth. There is nothing in the middle, no possibility that things could be seen differently from different angles. In this discussion, talknic says that the U.S. annexation of Mexico, something that all liberals opposed and generally was supported by the slave owners of the south, is actually perfectly lawful. In this alternate reality of pseudo logic, a fake referendum in Texas is and a treaty imposed on Mexico are cited as the very example of morality and lawfulness. Leaves one speechless, doesn't it? Anyway, did black people in Texas vote in this referendum? I am sure they couldn't wait to be slaves.

    • Talknic,
      Yes, it was hunky dory taking California from Mexico. That's why Lincoln and Emerson and so many others were opposed to that war. The most famous essay in American history, Thoreau's On civil disobedience deals with that exact topic and stipulates why he does not want to pay taxes to a govenrment that wages a war of aggression against Mexico.
      And about Russia stealing Siberia in the 1860's, according to you it is ok because it happened before some convention. I don't know how to respond to such an absurdity. Of course those that have stolen the most have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo.

    • "but that all Anglo societies except perhaps England are bad" - Scott
      Not at all. You see, once you steal enough land you get to write the laws and make it all perfectly legal. If you steal even more (see the U.S. taking over half of Mexico or Russia stealing Siberia from China) then you can get yourself a seat on the security council and be one of the good guys. Of course, at that point, you don't need to steal anymore and you can get into the business of moralizing. For instance, you can start a blog about other thieves and feel good about yourself. Then you get into the whole the sins of the fathers are not those of the sons and you are ready to enter the heavenly kingdom.
      Of course, it pays to go after little thieves. When big guys like China decide to demarcate a whole sea as theirs, the best policy is to suspend the moralizing and do some dealing. If Iraq tries to do the same, you go after them.
      Nothing ever changes.

  • Scott Walker's foreign policy education begins w/ lesson: East Jerusalem is not occupied
    • "Oh I see, bowing is the same to a Muslim as as a Kippa to a Jew. WOW!! I wonder if Muslims know. - " talknic
      What is it with you that everything has to be some kind of rule? Some people show respect in one way, some in another, some not at all. There is more to life than rules and laws and gotchas.

    • "Governor Scott Walker is wearing a Kippa … WHY? He’s not Jewish. - "Talknic
      Out of respect. The same reason Obama bowed to the Saudi king. It's why a lot of people do stuff but it is hard to explain to a pod.

  • Front-page attack in New York Times says BDS movement is driven by minorities' 'hostility toward Jews'
    • "Second, there are no large pockets of non-Zionist Jews except in BDS imagination." Jeff
      I completely agree with that statement. Most Jews have friends and relatives in Israel. Now one can hate one's family, that's very human, but it is not common.

    • 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.

    • "As an old man myself" ckg
      Old and grumpy, more like. As to you too teaching me about management, I haven't laughed so hard since Curb your enthusiasm.

    • Keith,
      Factually, only Crimea was given during Krustchev, not all of south east Ukraine. Odessa, Donetsk, etc have been in Ukraine longer, at least since the revolution.
      Even if the coup in Ukraine was bad and there are some bad guys there, that doesn't justify taking territory by force. Every country in Europe has a historical mistake it wishes to correct and for some, there may be good prerext to do so. Say, nationalists win in Romania. Should Hungary invade Transylvania then?
      Actually, Israel avoided the vote on Crimea in the UN which irked the U.S. Many of the far right in Europe support the annexation of Crimea because its ethnic politics. So you are in some strange company.

    • "staunch and enthusiastic supporters of those murderous Ukrainian neo-Nazis?" - Keith
      I attribute this comment to your ignorance about Europe. It implies at least some support for the illegal confiscation of Crimea and the current attempt to seize south east Ukraine. It's a bleak future that awaits Europe if the presence of minoritors becomes a reason to annex territories. Turkey could use it as a prerext to annex parts of Bulgaria; there are Albanian minorities in Macedonia, German ones in France and so many more. Russia has already done this to Georgia and helped Armenia to take over Karabakh. American lefties like you instinctively support Russia because it reminds them of the wonderful Soviets. It's also an example of American provincialism, where all events are seen without local context. By the way, millions of Ukranians fought bravely against Germany in WW2. But then again you call anyone who disagrees with you a Neo Nazi.

  • Bedouin village razed 83 times must pay $500,000 for demolitions, Israel says
    • "enviro-washing"
      The putting of any word before washing has such a lame cliche feel to it.

    • "I’m not an American." Oldgeezer
      Where are you from? Also, my "brilliance" is in accounting, not politics. I think every person is brilliant in something, and you must be too.
      Anyway, you said you have bad weather and that got me curious. Canada?

    • "Israel which destroys the water resources through over use " Oldgeezer
      Shocking for an American to criticize Israeli supposed overuse of water. Check this link
      Israeli water use per capita 282 cu m. U.S. Water use per capita 1583 cu m. Seven times more! Also, your Arab friends in Saudi - 928 cu m., or four times as much as Israelis. The Emirates, also in the arid region, 739 cubic meters, or three times as much.
      By these standards, Israel appears extremely economical with their water, despite an enormous agricultural sector. See what hatred does? You can't see the splinter in your own eye. Or is that "whataboutery"?

  • Shit Israeli soldiers did in Gaza
    • "Irish soldiers will not be going to war to steal or shit in someone else’s pot." Amigo
      Yes, the IRA has always been mindful of civilians, legendarily so. A gentle group, that one, wouldn't be caught shitting in the wrong pot.
      Also, as far as the Brits, I was sarcastic. I was referring to the Bengali famine, which was only the latest in an endless string of horrors and deprivations unleashed on one of the world's oldest civilizations.

    • "Or are you shit out of words." amigo
      I am. Comparing Jews to Irish is like Denny's to Chez Pierre. Ireland is like Athens in the golden age. A beacon to us all, closer to the heavens. I am sure if Irish soldiers go fighting, it will be with the grace of the Bolshoi ballet. You are no mere Khazars. Hey, you have given us old Bill, this modern day Chandragupta. And Joyce!

    • "Your comments are racist." John O
      You gotta love that victimization spiel. You dish it out daily on Israel and Jews, but you can't take it. Oh the poor poor Brits they are so humane. Laughing.

    • "He could see that the people he was conquering were, well, people". - John O.
      Well, it is because Brits are generally decent people, unlike Zionists. It has to do with that Nordic heritage. Witness the basic humanity shown towards their Hindu brethren.

  • Netanyahu appoints Ayelet Shaked—who called for genocide of Palestinians—as Justice Minister in new government
    • "I have never read someone toot their own horn on MW as - " just
      You are welcome to share your personal experiences and how they affect your worldview. It's called being honest, not being a blowhard, as long as you stick to the truth. Phil Weiss shares personal experiences all the time. It brings credibility. Otherwise we would all read Wikipedia and be done with it. I am very cool with a critique of the Jewish worldview because I am familiar with many of its pathologies. I think it's important to stick to the facts though. I get upset when the talk spills into vast Jewish networks and conspiracies, which just don't exist. I figure if they did exist I would have surely been contacted by these invisible puppet masters due to my position and contacts.

    • …”I could have a bigger career but I am not interested. As to my degrees they are from Bulgarian, American and British institutions and include both humanities and economics" -just
      You are unfair. All of the above is true but I don't want to mention the institutions because then I could lose my anonymity. As far as the career, that is obviously subjective. It's just that there are some pretty high positions that I can apply for if I wanted but I currently prefer to do other things.
      If Phil or James find my background or opinions of any interest, I would be happy to write a piece for the blog, in which case I might drop the anonymity. Then my credentials would be public. However, my views are not fully in line with the editorial ones so I doubt that would ever happen.

    • That’s it “catalan” you tell us what a hildago you are! G-d forbid anybody should think you were just another Bulgarian.. - Mooser
      The good people of Bulgaria saved the Jews during WWII. That is an astonishing event. I love Bulgaria dearly. It's a great country, with a complex culture with Slavic, Roman, and Greek influences. It's my favorite place in the whole world.
      However, I grew up being with my grandparents all the time. They spoke Ladino at home, cooked Spanish food, sang Spanish songs and told Spanish proverbs. It was just my culture. My grandfather was high in the communist regime and they used his Spanish skills. He met with Alliende, Castro and Neruda as a translator for one of the higher ups. Sephardic simply means Spanish in Hebrew.

    • "Catalan: Your English is awfully good for someone who came to the US only 20 years ago. You are either a) a linguist of astonishing and rare skill, or - " James
      You are now making me blush. I am thinking to put this comment in a frame.
      Actually, I worked as a translator in Bulgaria for years. Also, I went to an English language high school where much of the instruction was on English.
      But I do have some linguistic skills too. I learned some German, French, Spanish and Russian. I was actually training to be a Bulgarian diplomat. I kind of wanted to solve the world's problems. But the wind blew me away to New Mexico, where they need accountants and not diplomats...mice and men...

    • As a side note, I think the word "rabid" conjures images of an animal infected with rabies; it is an unbecoming and disrespectful way to address me, or anyone else.

    • "@ catalan You live where?" Citizen
      Albuquerque, New Mexico.

    • "Which reminds me that “Catalan” is a strange name for a rabid “Israel”-firster. -"
      Catalan is my grandfather's family name on mother's side. It's common for Sephardic Jews to have names like that, like Toledo, Granada, etc.
      As to "Israel firster" I am no firster anything. I am a Spanish Jew from Bulgaria who has lived in the U.S. For 20 years. My relatives are everywhere. I once did a genetic study and they found Slavic, Greek, and Palestinian elements predominating.
      I have not said a word of hatred here because I simply don't hate. You, on the other hand, are full of anger. That is not the way of the Buddha.

    • "The rest of your post is pure effluent as usual." Oldgeezer
      I am not Irish and can't write Ulysses and Finnegan's Wake.
      Since I haven't shot anyone (yet) I really don't feel like I need to be a defensive for what soldiers do. I am for peace and love. Where we differ is bds, I think it harms rather than hurts. Maybe I will be proven wrong and historic Palestine will become like Denmark. If so, I can't wait to see the logistics of it. Somehow, if Israelis have to pay more for goods and can't travel abroad, they will turn into saints. Cool.

    • "What a light unto nations."
      And why is that, in your opinion? Some Semitic trait? Inability to see the light? Are you saying that if Danes or Swedes settled Palestine, it would be conflict-free?
      Who are these perfect people that we should all emulate? Americans? Germans? Russians? Don't know whether to laugh or cry.

  • A response to the 'Washington Post' blogger who calls me an anti-Semite
    • Overall there is nothing wrong in having a discussion about Jews. I think that you exaggerate a little bit the power and influence of Jews in the United States.
      The site naturally attracts are a large assortment of people, some of whom are your standard fair "Jews rule the world for their own benefit" types. That is to be expected and would occur if you run a web site about any group of people.
      However, it is true that for many Jews it is difficult to accept the harsh critique offered here. That is also normal. Just think how many Americans see themselves the way the world sees us, and how they would react if all their most cherished myths (democracy, decency, charity) are analyzed with the same intensity.

  • Human rights activists thank Lauryn Hill for canceling upcoming concert in Israel
    • "yawn, that’s not very buddha like (your phrase)." Annie
      No, my phrase was the way of the Buddha. (Notice the capital B). Nobody can be Buddha-like, because he was one of the great teachers. You can try to read his wisdom and learn a little bit. He speaks much of anger.

    • Weird that the US government hires someone who freely admits they were “illegal”… - Just
      Terrible. I am with you. It's a local govenrment and they are not as vigorous in fencing off the untermenchen as the federal one. But I agree with you, it's awful a subhuman is taking the jobs of real Americans such as yourself.

    • Catalan, I may start calling you “Your Majesty” cause you sure changes from day to day. - Mooser
      I told you I am in middle management in government in your country.
      That's pretty average. I am not a celebrity not some famous politician. Your hatred of me, someone you don't know shows simply who you are. What inedaquacies you are hiding under this snickering, taunting, and hateful facade we will never know. Stay classy.

    • "This is what you call “the brilliant.

      “It seems the Poker Face singer has run out of wacky outfits ideas and is opting to just go naked instead…” Amigo

      Mozart was a drunk too, Beethoven was kind of crazy. Celebrity and talent can be draining. Lady Gaga is a cool and talented singer that has accomplished a lot in a very short time. It's tough to be normal when you are so popular and talented. All I am saying, don't bash her just because she is acting crazy. Many people would kill to accomplish 1 percent of what she has.

    • "revenue MW would lose if folks like catalan and his cohorts canceled their generous donations." Amigo -
      Hey friend,
      I actually like you. I think you are funny and a good person. I am also flattered that I have "cohorts", that's a first.
      As far as donations, hey, you never know where dough can come from. I would consider them. What I want to see is respect and appreciation for all good and smart people. There are a lot of those both in Israel and Palestine. I believe in brotherhood between Jews and Arabs. Like I said, genetically I am a mixture of Slav, Greek, Arab, Jew and Spanish and I can't hate any of them, it's like hating myself.
      To be honest with you I am not concerned about Israeli politicians. I could care less about them. I am just against average Joes like you and me being punished. That's just not fair. It doesn't help. I live in America and I just dislike this idea that "we" have the power to impose stuff.

    • "If only you could escape, get out and go to aother website! - "
      I am hooked. It's like Aristophanes, but in real time.

    • "I was under the impression she’s lost whatever she had. Her 15 minutes are up I guess. -" Marnie
      The cruelty of the mediocre towards the brilliant. Kind of sums up so many comments here.

  • MSM's platform for Pamela Geller is equivalent to normalizing David Duke and Nazis
    • "Not one of them, not a single one, has ever gotten an abortion or terminated their pregnancy!" - Mooser
      So droll. Then again, you have indicated you are not a kids person.

    • "Would this be characterized as an “exercise in free speech”, as “hate speech”, as “incitement to violence” (but whose violence?), or what? -" Pabelmont
      I think many of the writings of Giles about Jewish domination qualify as hate speech. Indeed, I think they are incitement to violence. He, and his supporters would disagree and say that they are just speaking the truth and I am embarrassed or paranoid.
      That's the nature of free speech. It always offends someone. I don't mind being on the receiving end of hate speech as long as I live in a country where all speech is protected.

  • Is it a crime to own your own land?
    • Boomer,
      Americans are not gentle innocents corrupted by Israel. We are greedy aggressors and we have always been so. Emerson, Melville, Thoreau, Lincoln, and John Quincy Adams all opposed the Mexican American War. It didn't matter. I now live in the Southwest too, so of course I benefit from this aggression. Yet, I don't try to create a fake world of a Golden Age before the founding of Israel. We are the descendants of the British Empire whose crimes and greed are legendary (although modern Britain is a descent country).

  • Spanish Jews resisted oppression in tunnels and, exiled, clutched their keys
    • It’s a pattern: Where Christians, Muslims, and Jews are concerned, laws of return (so far) seem always for Jews and not Muslims. - Pabelmont
      But to be fair, Ladino, or old Spanish, was the language of Sephardic Jews. Their cuisine was Spanish, as well as their religious rituals. I can attest to that. My grandparents spoke Spanish at home. My grandmother still thinks of it as her native language, at 97. That's 550 years after the expulsion.
      The heart of Sepharadic culture in Europe was Thesalonikki. All Jews there were killed. That must warm your heart, a place emptied of Jews. The joy you and Giles must feel.

  • Two videos to challenge my liberal Zionist friends
    • "decimated and reduced the Native Americans. And paid a tremendous price for it - " Mooser
      What price have Americans paid? Or is that sarcasm?

  • Forgiving the anti-Semites
    • Giles,
      You questioned my assertion that 70 percent of Jews intermarry. Actually the rate is 71 percent for non-orthodox Jews (like Janet Yellen). So how do you square a 71 percent rate of intermarriage with this notion that Jews only like other Jews? See the link below. Not that I expect any facts to sway you, but let this be clear to those who read these pages and perhaps may think that Jews are a clique who seek to network with each other.

    • 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.

    • Giles makes me feel deeply nostalgic. In Bulgaria, where I grew up, this kind of talk is the norm. Everyone knows that's Jews run the show, Turks are traitors, and gypsies are subhuman. In America, people bother with such odd concepts as political correctness. You are, like, not supposed to say that blacks are lazy, Hispanics are freeloaders, and Jews dominate finance. Here in America, people bother with bs like mutual respect and careful speaking. Giles should learn Bulgarian, he is practically already one.
      I guess according to him all powerful positions need to be rotated. Like, after a Jew we should have a Black Fed chair, then a Hispanic, then a Sikh. Yup, this would undoubtedly result in great peace and harmony. Only what would be the basis of the rotation. Size of the community maybe? But why stop at ethnic rotation. Let's have gender rotation and age rotation too.
      I think if Giles took over Holywood he will prohibit comedy. He is a serious man.

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