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SeriousBS: Elian2

zenduck 28 Apr 00 - 09:57 PM
GUEST 28 Apr 00 - 08:43 PM
McGrath of Harlow 28 Apr 00 - 07:34 PM
McGrath of Harlow 28 Apr 00 - 06:56 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 28 Apr 00 - 01:11 PM
McGrath of Harlow 28 Apr 00 - 01:04 PM
GUEST,The Yank 27 Apr 00 - 09:59 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 27 Apr 00 - 09:38 PM
GUEST,GRNJ 27 Apr 00 - 09:37 PM
GUEST,The Yank 27 Apr 00 - 05:07 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 27 Apr 00 - 02:22 PM
McGrath of Harlow 27 Apr 00 - 02:15 PM
Lonesome EJ 27 Apr 00 - 01:20 PM
katlaughing 27 Apr 00 - 12:46 PM
McGrath of Harlow 27 Apr 00 - 12:28 PM
SDShad 27 Apr 00 - 12:16 PM
GUEST,The Yank 27 Apr 00 - 12:03 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 27 Apr 00 - 10:53 AM
Escamillo 27 Apr 00 - 05:18 AM
kendall 27 Apr 00 - 04:36 AM
McGrath of Harlow 26 Apr 00 - 07:14 PM
wysiwyg 26 Apr 00 - 06:34 PM
bob schwarer 26 Apr 00 - 06:32 PM
McGrath of Harlow 26 Apr 00 - 02:51 PM
katlaughing 26 Apr 00 - 11:36 AM
Amergin 26 Apr 00 - 11:25 AM
GUEST,Angel 26 Apr 00 - 11:24 AM
kendall 26 Apr 00 - 10:45 AM
Whistle Stop 26 Apr 00 - 09:25 AM
kendall 26 Apr 00 - 08:04 AM
GUEST,Bob A. Ghanouj 26 Apr 00 - 07:59 AM
GUEST,Peter K 26 Apr 00 - 05:35 AM
Jim the Bart 25 Apr 00 - 11:53 PM
katlaughing 25 Apr 00 - 09:20 PM
Greg F. 25 Apr 00 - 09:10 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 25 Apr 00 - 09:00 PM
SINSULL 25 Apr 00 - 08:32 PM
Lonesome EJ 25 Apr 00 - 08:24 PM
Jim the Bart 25 Apr 00 - 08:14 PM
Jim Dixon 25 Apr 00 - 08:05 PM
GUEST,Peter K 25 Apr 00 - 07:45 PM
katlaughing 25 Apr 00 - 07:36 PM
kendall 25 Apr 00 - 07:34 PM
catspaw49 25 Apr 00 - 07:26 PM
Lonesome EJ 25 Apr 00 - 06:34 PM
Richard Bridge 25 Apr 00 - 06:05 PM
McGrath of Harlow 25 Apr 00 - 05:13 PM
katlaughing 25 Apr 00 - 05:06 PM
Petr 25 Apr 00 - 04:08 PM
Petr 25 Apr 00 - 04:08 PM
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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: zenduck
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 09:57 PM

Thank you, Aine - whatever happened to a sense of proportion? According to people who keep track of these things, Elian has outpaced the Death of Princess Di and the Great JFK Jr. Plunge in media saturation, and is closing in on OJ himself.

Think of how different it would be if:

1) Elian was Haitian: 2) Elian was a BLACK Cuban (the racism of the Miamistas is notorious); 3) It was Elian's mother that wanted him back.

If we really wanted to get rid of Castro we would take away the soapbox we've handed him with the embargo and let him rot away the way that the other collectivist nightmares of the 20th Century have. Castro is a pig - the US has prolonged his life in power by giving him something he can blame for the wretchedness of his country other than his own Stalinist idiocy.

The Miami community is dominated by families like the Mas Canosas who hate Castro because he broke their oligarchic Mafia-like hold on the country under Batista. We should be taking them just about as seriously as we take the folks who want to restore the French monarchy.

Anybody remember the armed federal troops that were sent to desegregate the schools in Little Rock pursuant to a federal court order? Were they storm troopers?


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 08:43 PM

You just don't recognize Ted's genius!
CLICK HERE


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 07:34 PM

I suppose it might be be "mudder" as in "Mudcatter"? In which case it all becomes blindigly clear:

"Your" as in "yours" at the end of a letter
"Muddeer" as in "Mudcatter" "wears army shoes" - "I'm a patriot" -

"Your mudder wears army shoes" = "This Mudcatter is a patriotic American - yours sincerely"


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 06:56 PM

"Yer mudder wears army shoes!!!"

Well, there's no answer to that is there? I can't completely see the relevance of it, but never mind. "Yer mudder wears army shoes!!! " How profound.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 01:11 PM

Yer mudder wears army shoes!!!


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 01:04 PM

"yank" can be a synonym for "jerk"

Now that does sound a bit like America-bashing...


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: GUEST,The Yank
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 09:59 PM

Oh yeah? Well, So's Yer Old Man! Nyah, Nyah, Nyah!!

[might as well keep this on an adult level....]


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 09:38 PM

Oh, Uh, I sometimes look things up in a dictionary too, and just noticed that "yank" can be a synonym for "jerk"--


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: GUEST,GRNJ
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 09:37 PM

Having read this whole thread, here are the important things that no one is saying:

(1) A law enforcement agency is not required to "negotiate" with someone who is breaking the law. If they choose to do so tactically in some situation, fine, but to express outrage when they give up talking and make their move is ridiculous.

(2) Statements that there was no court order are also ridiculous. In addition to the several decisions that supported the INS'legal authority, there was a search warrant to seize the child, which happens to be a court order, which amounted to a finding that the child was being held illegally, and ordered officers to seize the child.

(3) An order specifically ordering L.Gonzalez to surrender the child would almost certainly have been ignored. L.G. would likely have simply gone to prison for contempt, and taken on the martyr role, while the family would still have the child for months on end.

(4) Never spoken by Reno or anyone else, but something I am *sure* was considered, (professional experience): There was certainly a growing risk that the Miami family was going to sneak the child out of the house and hide him, which would have totally thwarted the government and been disastrous. The family would have gone to jail, but they would have just soaked up the "martyr" business and kept this thing going for years.

(5) There is no issue about whether excessive force was used, because no force was used at all, except on Lazaro's door and on a few people who got shoved out of the way. This is well within what is permissible in executing a search warrant, and was clearly necessary. The minimal force used was absolutely lawful.

(6) Carping about officers being "armed" and guns being "drawn" is nonsensical. Law enforcement officers are always armed, and submachine guns have to be "drawn". Have you ever seen a submachine gun holster? You could ask whether SWAT uniforms, equipment, and tactics were overkill, but this is just a style point; it has no bearing on the legality or propriety of the raid. I am inclined to give the benefit of doubt to those who had to execute the raid.

Bottom Line: The raid was legal and nothing was done during the raid that was legally or logically objectionable. There is nothing to "investigate". There is nothing for "hearings" to "look into".


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: GUEST,The Yank
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 05:07 PM

Wow! What a guy! He knows EVERYTHING- and he's humble, too.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 02:22 PM

Sorry Yank, you have no idea what I know about the US--or anything else for that matter--

I worked for most of the last five years with a United Nations affiliated NGO that delivered Global Education/Problem Solving Workshops to everyone from General Motors executives to school kids in Harlem, from LA to Estonia, to Singapore--

I can tell you how many mud houses you can build for what Americans spend on Video games, or how much it would cost to provide an electrical power grid to rural Paraguay--

I can also give you numbers related to how much the nations of the World spend on standing armies, armaments, and the like, and I can show you how much it might cost to solve the world's"insoluble" problems--

I spent(and spend) lots of time poring over newpapers from all over the world--I spend a fair amoount of time writing materials related to Global political and educational issues--More to the point, I spend a lot of time discussing these and related issues with international educators, business people etc So I do know something--.

One thing that I have discovered is that most of the things that people believe to be true are not quite so true when you look into them--


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 02:15 PM

"The fact is, you cannot be a World Power without committing transgressions, sometimes huge transgressions."

Great Powers do indeed commit appalling "transgressions". List a few of the ones committeed by the countryt I am living in, and I wouldn't feel any need to excuse them.

Maybe it's inevitable. Maybe the level of "transgressions" can be reduced, especiallly if the citizens of then great powers concerned refuse to tolerate them.

Equally one could say that you cannot be a small neighbour of a World Power, under siege from that World Power, without committing transgressions.

Planks and splinters. Motes and beams. Pots and kettles.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 01:20 PM

Unfortunately I am being put in the position of defending my country in a thread where the main concern should be what was and is best for Elian. I will say this: the level of freedom and opportunity within the United States is probably the greatest in the world. As an experiment in self-rule by a country's own population, where the will of the people is exerted by their government, I find the United States second to none, and certainly far ahead of a Dictatorship like Cuba. Our actions in the world arena have been essentially motivated by these beliefs in freedom and self-rule. Since World War 2, the US has been put in a role we had never experienced: World Power, Bulwark against Communism, Policeman, and World Larder. We have made many mistakes, as the British did when in this position. But let me ask this....when Iraq seized Kuwait, should that action have been ignored, or did someone need to step up and stop it? And who would stop it if not the US, with the aid of its allies? And I believe this... if not for the Berlin Airlift in the early 50s, that city would have fallen to the Russian occupying forces, just as South Korea and Taiwan would have been subdued. Furthermore, I doubt that Europe would have endured in its present form without the presence of American Forces to counterract the Communist Block forces in the Fifties and Sixties. The fact is, you cannot be a World Power without committing transgressions, sometimes huge transgressions.

As for the action of the Vincennes, I believe it was a tragic mistake. If their commander was decorated for shooting down a passenger aircraft, then that was also wrong. Perhaps our "guilt" in this matter is somewhat mitigated by the loss of hundreds of soldiers and civilians, as well as Scots on the ground, when one of our civilian aircraft was destroyed by terrorists over Locherbie.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: katlaughing
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 12:46 PM

MTEd said, Most Americans know how to filter the political spin out of the news, and they have learned how to discount the lurid and distorted tabloid coverage--

I have to say, MTed, you have a lot more faith in the general populace than I do; especially since it is such a small percentage who even care enough to turn out to vote. It is my belief that the masses "eat up" the political spin and other pap which is so prevalent in the media, otherwise the media wouldn't be dishing it out. No ratings=no coverage.

I also don't think of what McGrath has posted as bashing. Just my opinion.....

kat


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 12:28 PM

What I'm doing isn't America bashing. Every time I've said anything critical of aspects of the United States, I have pointed out that people can validly say the same kind of things about other countries, including the one I'm living in

My point is very much the same as M.Ted's, actually - I'm objecting to people looking at other countries and saying that everything about them is worse than the country in which they are living. MTed took it that I was saying that about his country (which I wasn't), and rightly objected to it.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: SDShad
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 12:16 PM

Yank's right on that. I'm the son of a Korea vet and son-in-law of a vet of every major amphibious landing of the European Theatre in WWII, and I'm more than a little troubled by the captain of the Vincennes getting a medal.

Sadly, I can't think of a thing McGrath has said about our fair land that isn't true, M.Ted.

Chris


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: GUEST,The Yank
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 12:03 PM

M.Ted:

I'm a natchul born American- all 56 years of me- and I don't think McGrath can be accused of anything CLOSE to "America-Bashing". He seems to know a great deal more about the real situation in America than you do. That's one of the advantages of not getting all your news from the U.S. Media. You should try it- then maybe you'd begin to see why the US alternately horrifies & amuses foreign nationals! Sorry, but the U. S. of A. is not the be-all and end-all of the universe.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 10:53 AM

McGrath,

I am getting really tired of your stream of America-bashing--You don't know anything about the United States, about life here, about our economy, or about our real problems--an you are carrying on as if you were the high inquisitor-

You have been reading and hearing about incidents that are so far from the ordinary here that we are all shocked by them and have trouble even finding a context to fit them into--

Crime of all sorts, including violent crime, involving guns--has been declining here for quite a number of years-- But certain types of crime sell newspapers, and and keep people watching TV news--

Crime is also a political issue--the liberal politicians make an issue of every gun related incident because there is a perception that it makes the conservatives look bad because of the "gun lobbby"--

Most Americans know how to filter the political spin out of the news, and they have learned how to discount the lurid and distorted tabloid coverage--

Unfortunately, many of our European friends, who imagine themselves to be better educated and more sophisticated than Americans, have yet to learn these skills--


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Escamillo
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 05:18 AM

I have been reading this thread with interest, but I think it is a very sensible subject involving two nations which are sisters of mine, and it´s difficult to give an opinion from this hemisphere. However as a father and as a Latin American I´m much satisfied to see so serious concern from everybody, about the tragedy of this Latin family. Thanks to all.
Un abrazo - Andrés (in Buenos Aires, Argentina)


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: kendall
Date: 27 Apr 00 - 04:36 AM

Those light planes were spying..Castro was fully justified.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 07:14 PM

"His Migs managed to shoot down a couple of light planes a few years back."

Hardly really measures up to what the US Vincennes did on the 3rd July 1988, when it shot down a civilian airliner,killing 290 people, all civilians, largely women and children. President Reagan described it as "a proper defensive action".

And then Reagan went off to a 4th of July celebration, and none of the flags flown that day were put at half-mast. And a few weeks later the Captain of the Vincennes was given a medal. Puboic opinion polls gave it that 80% of Americans thought what had happened had been justified.

It probably wasn't an intentional atrocity, it was a mistake - a gung-ho commander breaking all the rules because he wanted to use his weaponry, resulting in a massacre of innocent people; and then those in charge decided it would be better to cover it all up, blame the victims, and decorate the man responsible, instead of court-martialling him. Things like this happen in all countries. They've certainly happened in the British armed forces, certainly happened in France - yes, and very likely in Cuba too.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: wysiwyg
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 06:34 PM

To hell with all of our rants, I can get to Shipppensburg from here!! Should I Praisepoem the brilliant Melvin into a Mudcat membership?

Melvin for PR Director!

~S~


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: bob schwarer
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 06:32 PM

His Migs managed to shoot down a couple of light planes a few years back.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 02:51 PM

"Enough of this "nobody's perfect so just keep your mouth shut" blabber. There is some question of degree of transgressions."

As you say, Lonesome. Degree of transfressions. Castro's done lots of things I don't like.

But he's never invaded a country on the other side of the woorld and killed two million of its people, and 50,000 of his own in a futile war. (Yes,I know about sending Cuban troops to support the Angolan government against a South African incursion - not quite the same thing)

He's never had one of his warships shoot down a civilian airbus, killing all 300 people on board, and then given the captain and the crew a decoration.

There are two million American citizens in prison. That's a higher proportion than of Cuban citizens in Cuban prisons.

To the best of my knowledge there hasn't been a single massacre of children in a Cuban school carried out by another child.

The point I'm making is not that America's evil and Cuba's not. I'm just saying it's not all one way. Freedom of speech is important, but it's not the only freedom. America scores high on freedom of speech - a lot higher than England - but there are some things on which it doesn't score so high.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: katlaughing
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 11:36 AM

GUEST, Angel, THANK YOU for posting that! Well-done!

For anyone who is interested in listening to the superb and compassionate author I mentioned above, here is the link to the NPR page which has the audio available. You just have to scroll down a bit to find it.

Thanks,

kat


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Amergin
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 11:25 AM

Maybe he's afraid of being Bobbited.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: GUEST,Angel
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 11:24 AM

"ELIAN WILL CONTINUE TO DOMINATE NEWS"

Elian Gonzalez is back with his father, but his soap opera is far from over. CNN, MSNBC and other television networks have renewed the show for at least another season, confident that Americans haven't had their fill of the 6-year-old Cuban boy and his emotional second cousin.

Even ABC's "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?" can't match the ratings of "Who Wants to be Elian's Guardian?" Especially with a cast as glamorous as Lazaro Gonzalez, the great-uncle, Donato Dalrymple, the great fisherman, and Marisleysis Gonzalez, the great actress.

Republicans will provide more drama for the show by launching an inquiry into the pre-dawn federal raid that snatched Elian from his relatives' Miami home. The congressional hearing will offer communist Cuba another lesson in the workings of a democracy. This lesson will be called "how to waste taxpayers' money."

A number of other events will keep Elian in the news for a long time:

MAY: An appeals court rules that Elian is old enough to apply for political asylum on his own. The court also rules that Elian is old enough to drive, smoke and drink.

JUNE: The stock market gets a major boost as investors spend a record $50 billion to buy into a new Internet company: Elian.com. The Web site allows people around the world to comment on Elian's case, chat with Elian and offer to pay for his college education.

JULY: Strapped to pay their mounting legal bills, Elian's relatives in Miami decide to sell the bed he slept in for five months. Though damaged in the federal raid, the bed fetches $2 billion on eBay. They spend part of the money to organize a massive protest in Washington, D.C., dubbed the "Million Cuban March to Free Elian From His Loving Father."

AUGUST: Elian signs endorsement deals with Pepsi, Cheerios and Colgate. But in a surprising move, he refuses to endorse any of the presidential candidates. A disappointed Al Gore nevertheless tries to win the critical Cuban- American vote by saying, "If I'm elected, the White House will have only honorable interns, such as that cute cousin of Elian's." George W. Bush goes a step further, pledging to appoint Elian -- whether or not he learns English -- as secretary of state. "He'd help improve relations with Cuba," Bush says. "He'd be able to speak to that Fidel guy, whatever his last name is."

SEPTEMBER: Life magazine revives itself by changing its name to Elian's Life. Each issue features new pictures of Elian smiling beside his father. The magazine attracts 5 million new readers with pictorials such as "Elian meets the Pope," "Elian visits the White House," and "Elian replaces Kathie Lee." Marisleysis Gonzalez challenges the authenticity of the photographs, asking, "How come Elian's hair never moves?" Republicans launch another inquiry.

OCTOBER: Republicans finally decide to support a gun control bill. The bill would restrict the use of automatic weapons -- not by ordinary citizens and criminals, but by federal agents. "We cannot have our agents carrying such powerful weapons when raiding homes," Sen. Bob Smith says. "Elian was scared to death and his second cousin, Marisleysis, has been traumatized for life. Poor girl may never own a machine gun."

NOVEMBER: Cuban-American singer Gloria Estefan returns to the top of the music charts with a new album called "Illegal Elian." The title song includes these lyrics: "Elian, we wanted you to stay, but Janet Reno's thugs stole you away. Elian, they put you in an Astro van, just to send you to the Castro man."

DECEMBER: Fidel Castro, still beaming about the raid on the Gonzalez home, offers to appoint Janet Reno as Cuba's attorney general. "Here in Cuba, you can use as much force as you want," Castro says. "You won't have to worry about being criticized. We don't have any Republicans."

JANUARY 2001: The American Red Cross hires Elian to teach a survival course. The first part of the course is called "how to survive in the ocean when your boat capsizes." The second part is called "how to survive a five-month stay with an annoying cousin and drunken uncle."

Melvin Durai is a Shippensburg, Pa.-based writer and humorist. A native of India, he grew up in Zambia and moved to the U.S. in the early 1980s.

http://www.Humor.Melvin.com


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: kendall
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 10:45 AM

Lott wants to ban butcher knives..now, thats leadership!!!


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Whistle Stop
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 09:25 AM

Kat, I couldn't agree more. Of all the pathetic political posturing, maneuvering and dodging we've seen from our Republican-majority congress over the last few years, the despicable words and actions of Trent Lott, Tom DeLay and their cohorts over the last few days really stand out.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: kendall
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 08:04 AM

Right on Kat..just remember, the republicans are only doing what they must do in order to regain the white house. And, they will do it.. anything, that is.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: GUEST,Bob A. Ghanouj
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 07:59 AM

Truth went down the street for a pack of ciggies ten years ago and hasn't been seen since....


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: GUEST,Peter K
Date: 26 Apr 00 - 05:35 AM

Lonesome, sorry I misread. But you're still way out to equate the freedom of the press in Britain with that in the states. The British libel laws (protecting only the rich and privileged) and lack of any freedom of information legislation (which the Freedom of Information Bill now going through parliament will do little to address) make an enormous difference. Many public figures in Britain have got away with their crimes by threatening to sue, Jonathan Aitken style. As it happens, Aitken's bluff was called and he was proved to have perjured himself. But that was aa a sheer fluke.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Jim the Bart
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 11:53 PM

MTED - sorry, I misunderstood. But the being Andy Rooneyed hit too close to home. It's much too easy to assume an ironic or learned pose and make grand statements that don't necessarily move a discussion forward. This is why Andy Rooney always bugged me. That and his keen eye for the obvious. And that's what has bugged me about the coverage of this story. I assumed that Elian had been living with his mother; I always assume that the Mom gets custody when the parents divorce. I don't ever remember hearing that there was a real relationship between father and son on the nightly news; just that there was no history of abuse by the father. I believe they call that "damning by faint praise". I just learned that the Mom had taken the boy from school without the father's permission yesterday. And even that scene was painted in colors chosen carefully for maximum effect. And is it true that the family hadn't told Elian that his mom was dead? Who can pick the little bits of truth out of all this?

All I really know about this mess is that the opposition gets to stick it to the administration in an election year, the "gallant Cuban expatriots" milked their moment in the spotlight for all its worth, and Fidel gets to tug on his beard and give the middle digit salute to his ancient enemy one more time. Bah! Let the boy and his father be and to the devil with the rest of 'em


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: katlaughing
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 09:20 PM

LOL!!!


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Greg F.
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 09:10 PM

You mean Capitalism ISN'T ordained by God? And Kat, don't pick on the poor Republicans. They can't help it. Its a disease. Massive die-off of brain cells.....


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 09:00 PM

Bartholomew, I didn't mean that you were grandstanding--I was talking about the professional grandstanders--the politicians and TV "news" people whose coverage of an issue is two sentences and a pained expression--

The thing that gets me now is that the Republicans jumped to the call of the Miami Cubans so fast--When was the last time you saw a Congressional investigation of something begin four days after it happened?


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: SINSULL
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 08:32 PM

It took less than 24 hours. A picture of Elian and fisherman at gunpoint appeared in my email with the caption "Drop the chalupa".

I keep thinking of Solomon deciding to cut the child in half. One parent agreed (and stuck a helpless baby in the middle of a media frenzy); the other stood back and said "No, don't hurt my child" (and eventually tucked him away with family and loved ones away from prying eyes and flashing cameras).

Sorry for the maudlin sentimentality but my child would never be subjected to the circus Elian endured.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 08:24 PM

Peter K...I've just re-read my statement above, and am baffled how you managed to glean that I said the US Press has less freedom than the UK press. On contrary, I would say that freedom of the press, for better or worse, is nearly unfettered in both countries. You take the good with the bad when any kind of freedom is unfettered. The same press that gave us two years of Jon Benet Ramsey also brought down the corrupt Richard Nixon- the blade cuts both ways.

The trade embargo on Cuba is a relic of the cold war, of American anger at Castro for declaring a communist state in the Carribbean. I for one think that it is has outlived any usefulness it had, and think it should be ended. Castro will fall either way.

During the post-World War 2 period, the United States and its allies in NATO and SEATO supported many repressive regimes in the name of the "lesser of two evils". With the end of the Cold War, the need to control countries to keep them from joining the opposing block has evaporated, and global intercession by the US has by and large taken place to avert genocide (see Bosnia), to feed the starving (see Somalia), or to put a misguided despot in his place(see Kuwait).

For better or worse, the people of the United States, or Britain, determine the direction their country takes. If that direction is wrong, the people must be shown that, and the direction can be changed. Would you and I be having this conversation in Cuba?


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Jim the Bart
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 08:14 PM

I don't mind being taken to task for grandstanding, if that's what I was doing, but I have to stand by my other post. Unfortunately, MTED, I'm beginning to look like Andy Rooney, too.

I don't think we should shut our eyes and walk by when things happen. My participation in this thread betrays my interest in discussing the "human drama". And I don't think muzzling the Press is a good idea - their importance in this here democracy of our'n is not disputed here. And maybe that's what bothers me about what I see in the media, both written and on-the-air. We do not get the news; we get news stories. And that undermines the importance of the media as a means for keeping us informed. My reference to the coverage of many of these stories as soap operas is not unintentional. In the soaps you get synthetic emotions, easily identifiable heroes and villains, contrived situations and convenient resolutions. And that's what people want to see in their new shows, too. So that's what they get. You are right, some people pay attention to these things for all the right reasons - to provide help if possible, out of real concern. But too many people are looking for a quick fix in the sex and/or violence zone. It is nothing but voyeurism. And if you want to talk about cheap, there it is. In my opinion.

Regarding the topic, rather than the context in which I have been seeing it. . . Although I think Janet Reno made the right call here, there seems to be a pattern of long drawn out negotiating, followed by a quick and often violent ending. I'm not sure how it could have been handled better, given the public spotlight and the tendency for people to polarize around these situations in this country. For the child's sake a quick resolution, based on the law and the facts would have been best. But public debate on all issues in the news is seen as a given these days, and the administration would have been blasted if everyone wasn't given a chance to voice their opinion. It was a no win situation made worse, not better, (again in my opinion) by it's value as programming.


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Subject: Miami Gonzalez Family Exposed In a Lie!
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 08:05 PM

Miami Gonzalez Family Exposed In a Lie!

Check out this article in American Politics Journal.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: GUEST,Peter K
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 07:45 PM

Lonesome, the USA may be the most disgusting nation on earth in many different ways, but there's no way you can say that its press has less freedom than the British press. It's the other way around, and by a wide margin. Just ask Harold Evans.But then when you see how a free press behaves, it's time to start wondering whether a free press is that big a deal.

It's the blithe hypocrisy that gets me most about the states. A congressman was asked on TV the other day why the USA still maintained trading sanctions against Cuba. The answer was that "we don't trade with dictators". That's breathtaking. Half the dictators in the world were installed by USA agencies or USA commercial interests and many others - including some of the worst - have been propped up by Washington.Remember Zaire, or the Shah's Iran, Pinochet (installed to replace an elected government)?


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: katlaughing
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 07:36 PM

If Americans have something truly to be outraged about, it was clearly illustrated in a couple of stories on NPR just now. The contrasts are stark:

The first is an interview with a man who chronicles the devastation of minority-area schools...no library books because the school libraries have been dismantled; a high school with 1,000 9th graders, of whom only 65 will make it to graduation from high school; the same high school he calls a land of apartheid. The link for the story will be up first thing tomorrow. It is striking how much this man cares and how he does something about what he sees. He has a powerful voice and delivery of words.Here's the blurb:

"ORDINARY RESURRECTIONS" -- Noah talks with Jonathan Kozol (koh-ZAHL) about his new book "Ordinary Resurrections - Children in the Years of Hope." In the late 1960's Kozol wrote about teaching fourth grade in Boston. "Death at an Early Age" has now sold two million copies and is still widely read by beginning teachers. His later books have been about educational inequalities in the South Bronx, and the new one is simply about his conversations with the children he's come to know. He describes Pinapple, a charming eight-year-old, and other youngsters, and their curiosity about the outside world, "white and safe." Kozol says the children have taught him to pray again. (12:00) {STATIONS NOTE PUBLISHING INFO:} Ordinary Resurrections is from Crown Publishers New York ISBN 0-517-7000-X."

The other was a report on the meeting of Janet Reno with members of Congress, today. I got up cursing the devisive, extreme partisanship I heard spewing from the mouths of Trent Lott and few other pompous asses. Now, they want to start a series of hearings, drag it on, decide if Juan is a fit father, because he was informed that guns would be taken for use in the raid to get his son! These are the same pro-gun assholes who don't give a shit about kids being killed. Sorry, I could go on and on. Finally, I heard Chris Dodd of Connecticut say it was time for Congress to let the Gonsalez family heal, deal with the court system etc., and get back to very real business of this country. Gee, do ya 'spose, maybe like, oh, I dunno, geting our school s abck into shape!?NO!

I am incensed first of all that Congress ever got involved in a custody case and two, that all this congress has done for 8 years is run up huge bills in obfuscatory bullshit trying bring down anyone and anything remotely related to President Clinton. They have not legislated...they have been instransigent and have nothing but their own agendas in mind. They do not give a goddamn about American or her peoples and all of them should be voted out. And now, we get more hearings, more huge costs, to the taxpayers only.

Like I said, for me the contrasts were mind-boggling.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: kendall
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 07:34 PM

I've just returned from a road trip, so, havn't been keeping up..to answer someones question..every local paper I've seen here has shown two photos. The big one shows the Marshal pointing a rifle at the man who was holding Elian. The look on the boys face was one of fear (well dah) the small photo shows Elian smiling in his fathers arms. The news media make me sick.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: catspaw49
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 07:26 PM

Richard Bridge----

I DID take up your point of two threads past regarding children's rights and custodial fights here in the US. Evidently you decided not to pursue it with me because I am just the resident genial buffoon or something. Maybe I need a law degree to state my case. But the subject was addressed by me at that time.

Spaw--Genial Buffoon


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 06:34 PM

Ah hogwash. In England, the US, and Ireland we have the ability to say what we think (including criticising our own government), go where we want(even to leaving the country if we want), we have a free press(whatever we may think of their actions and motives), and a right to a peaceful revolution every 2-6 years(it's called an election). As a member of a free society I have a right to criticise my own country, as well as any other. More to the point, I have a DUTY to point a finger at any Repressive Fascist Dictatorship (such as the one in Cuba)and call someone like Castro a scoundrel, especially since no one in his country can do so without risking death or incarceration.

Enough of this "nobody's perfect so just keep your mouth shut" blabber. There is some question of degree of transgressions. Winston Churchill, even if his country was keeping India under the yoke of Colonialism, had every right to call the NAZI Regime a band of murdering thugs.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 06:05 PM

Thank you Magrath. While a breath of sanity is blowing, and we might be prepared to admit that capitalism is not ordained by God, and htat there may be room for debate on where it would be better for Elian to live, would someone care to expand the point that Castro had to liberate Cuba from American capitalism and exploitation, and would anyone else like to take up the argument I raised about two threads ago that the US legal system is surely backward looking in regarding children as property the subject of parental rights?

It's not that I necessarily think it wrong that Elain had to go back - it's just that I would like the decision taken sensibly.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 05:13 PM

The point I was making wasn't that random massacres of children by ther children in schools (and now in a zoo)mean that the United States is necessarily worse than other places in the world. In all sorts of ways it is better than lots of other places - and in others it is worse. That is something the USA has in common with other countries, including those it regards as pariahs.

I was indicating some scepticism about the glib assumption that comes across from some commentators in the media, and in this thread at times(are we media or not? I think we probably are - we're just not mass media).

I mean the assumption that clearly anybody who isn't crazy or wicked or brainwashed is going to prefer to live in the United States rather than anywhere else, especially Cuba, and that it would obviously be better for Juan Rodriguez to stay in thge States and bring up his son here.

I doubt if there is any depravity committed by the Cuban government that can't be matched by the American government. I doubt if there is any sickness in Cuban society that can't be matched by what has happened and what still happens in America.

And you could say the same about most countries. We see something going wrong over there, and it's a different kind of going wrong from the stuff that we take for granted where we are. And we think we are so much better than they are.

It's been said before, and said better, by someone whom most Americans claim to respect: Do not judge and you will not be judged, because the judgements you give are the judgements you will get...Why do you observe the splinter in your brother's eye and never notice the plank in your own? How dare you say to your brother "Let me take the splinter out of your eye", when all the time there is a plank in your own? Hypocrite!Take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly enough to take the splinter out of your brothers's eye.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: katlaughing
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 05:06 PM

Jim Dixon, well-said! Ms. Reno is in unchartered territory as the first female AG and think she should be applauded for her even-handed manner and calm. I feel sorry for her that her disease is getting worse, yet she perseveres, despite the very partisan and sickening posturing of her detractors.

Have any of you tried NOT watching television news? It is liberating and healthy. Reading a newspaper, listening to BBC and NPR news on the radio, seems to bring a much more balanced reality to reporting.

America seems to be full of what I call vicarious lifers: people who live their lives out through the latest news/soap opera, etc. on television. And, sophocleese was right on when she said it is a distratcion from what they cannot face in their own lives. They are marking time and, to me, it is a tragedy.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Petr
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 04:08 PM

I agree with Bartholomew & Whistlestop & Aine 100%. The most interesting aspect of the story is how the media pick it up and carry the ball to the point where everyone is sick of the issue. This is essentially a custody battle that has been publicized and politicized out of all proportion (By Castro, the Cuban community and the US govt and media). ditto with OJ and Monica. Its a daily soap opera. and we probably dont know the real truth.

My first experience of how the news media operate was when they came in to do a story on a residential school for autistic children where I worked at the time. There was a behaviour expert who came for a few days with a completely new strategy of behaviour modification and the news showed him and One of the kids Day 1. Biting and hitting the expert and Day 3 hugging and kissing said expert. What a change! except that those of us who knew the child, knew that he could go from one to the other in a matter of seconds. The media did a dramatic story on the subject (and in the end) misrepresented everyones views. It left me wondering what the point was. A good story? And just how much of what we hear/see is a good story as opposed to truth. By the way they got Day 1 and Day 3 out of order.

Petr.


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Subject: RE: SeriousBS: Elian2
From: Petr
Date: 25 Apr 00 - 04:08 PM

I agree with Bartholomew & Whistlestop & Aine 100%. The most interesting aspect of the story is how the media pick it up and carry the ball to the point where everyone is sick of the issue. This is essentially a custody battle that has been publicized and politicized out of all proportion (By Castro, the Cuban community and the US govt and media). ditto with OJ and Monica. Its a daily soap opera. and we probably dont know the real truth.

My first experience of how the news media operate was when they came in to do a story on a residential school for autistic children where I worked at the time. There was a behaviour expert who came for a few days with a completely new strategy of behaviour modification and the news showed him and One of the kids Day 1. Biting and hitting the expert and Day 3 hugging and kissing said expert. What a change! except that those of us who knew the child, knew that he could go from one to the other in a matter of seconds. The media did a dramatic story on the subject (and in the end) misrepresented everyones views. It left me wondering what the point was. A good story? And just how much of what we hear/see is a good story as opposed to truth. By the way they got Day 1 and Day 3 out of order.

Petr.


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