Thursday, June 26, 2014

USA Loses and still Wins??? Only in Futbol World Cup Style


Team USA stunned the experts who were expecting a quick exit from their Death Draw in the first round of the Brazil World Cup by losing their final match against Germany yet winning a spot in the next Knockout Round of 16 along with Germany and host Brazil among others.

By Futbol standards it was a great game with the final score 1-0 Germany after 94 minutes of play.  So if there are 10 players on each team I guess that means it took 1880 minutes of accumulated play to get one goal.  (That is in man-minutes).

In the end, it didn't matter that the USA lost because Portugal won and therefore the USA goes to the next round appropriately called the Knockout round.  It is called the Knockout Round because if you lose this time you really do go home.  Of course home might be nice for a team like the USA who had to travel to Brazil for the tournament and then travel over 9,000 miles in Brazil to play just three games.

For some odd reason the four stadiums were each built in different time zones or countries or something so the 600,000 fans from outside the country would not be partying in the same town every night.  The host city is the capitol called Brasilia which was just built in 1960 because it was either in the center of the country or far away from the rowdy towns like Rio de Janeiro.  Still the biggest crowds are in Rio.

Over 150,000 Americans traveled to the World Cup and adopted the nickname "Outlaws" perhaps to fit in with the local syndicates.  For the most part the rest of the world is mad that Brazil got the World Cup, the next Olympics, and Rio just hosted the 2011 Military World Games and the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup.

Party on as they say and no one can party like the lovely people of Brazil.


World Cup - USA versus Germany Today!!!


United States head coach Jurgen Kinsmann

Go USA!!!


Why the media has it all wrong - they forgot about Independents


Sometimes the most obvious is the most difficult to see and when it comes to the American media the most obvious and most logical is most often overlooked.  Ever since Obama first ran for office there has been a peculiar Main Street media fascination with the Tea Party movement and when it comes to the liberal media, it became an obsession.

For some odd reason the Lame Street media has been afraid, fearful, and terrorized by the thought that the Tea Party and its seemingly radical right wing supporters represents a grave threat to the American political process.

If the media wants to condemn a conservative commentator they label them "Tea Party" whether they have any affiliation with the Tea Party or not.  It is the liberal way to stigmatize the on air personalities that cause so much havoc in their lives.

Yet most conservative commentators have never joined the Tea Party and view it as an element of the Republican party, not a separate institution.  So the Democrats have tried to diminish any threat from the Tea Party by talking about the splintering effect the Tea Party has on the Republicans.

I suspect they just don't get it.

The only threat to the two party system in America is their arrogance in thinking there really is just two parties in the country and their failure to see we are rapidly approaching the point of no return when more American are alienated by both political parties and their partisan nonsense when in truth there is little difference between them.

Every election we get closer to the point when there are going to be more Independents than BOTH Democrats and Republicans.  When over 50% of the public believes neither party serves the public but both parties have become their own Special Interests.

With the continuing decline in public confidence in our political parties, politicians and media and with the continued ignorance or deliberate effort by the media to disregard the growing number of Americans rejecting both political parties that day we cross the 50% threshold is rapidly approaching and will most certainly be here by 2016 or 2020.

The following is a Gallup Poll which most media failed to report on the continuing surge in the number of Independents in America.  They are the real danger to the two party system and the real hope for healing our Nation.

January 8, 2014

Record-High 42% of Americans Identify as Independents

Republican identification lowest in at least 25 years

by Jeffrey M. Jones
PRINCETON, NJ -- Forty-two percent of Americans, on average, identified as political independents in 2013, the highest Gallup has measured since it began conducting interviews by telephone 25 years ago. Meanwhile, Republican identification fell to 25%, the lowest over that time span. At 31%, Democratic identification is unchanged from the last four years but down from 36% in 2008.

The results are based on more than 18,000 interviews with Americans from 13 separate Gallup multiple-day polls conducted in 2013.

In each of the last three years, at least 40% of Americans have identified as independents. These are also the only years in Gallup's records that the percentage of independents has reached that level.

Americans' increasing shift to independent status has come more at the expense of the Republican Party than the Democratic Party. Republican identification peaked at 34% in 2004, the year George W. Bush won a second term in office. Since then, it has fallen nine percentage points, with most of that decline coming during Bush's troubled second term. When he left office, Republican identification was down to 28%. It has declined or stagnated since then, improving only slightly to 29% in 2010, the year Republicans "shellacked" Democrats in the midterm elections.

Not since 1983, when Gallup was still conducting interviews face to face, has a lower percentage of Americans, 24%, identified as Republicans than is the case now. That year, President Ronald Reagan remained unpopular as the economy struggled to emerge from recession. By the following year, amid an improving economy and re-election for the increasingly popular incumbent president, Republican identification jumped to 30%, a level generally maintained until 2007.

Democratic identification has also declined in recent years, falling five points from its recent high of 36% in 2008, the year President Barack Obama was elected. The current 31% of Americans identifying as Democrats matches the lowest annual average in the last 25 years.

Fourth Quarter Surge in Independence

The percentage of Americans identifying as independents grew over the course of 2013, surging to 46% in the fourth quarter. That coincided with the partial government shutdown in October and the problematic rollout of major provisions of the healthcare law, commonly known as "Obamacare."

The 46% independent identification in the fourth quarter is a full three percentage points higher than Gallup has measured in any quarter during its telephone polling era.

Democrats Maintain Edge in Party Identification

Democrats maintain their six-point edge in party identification when independents' "partisan leanings" are taken into account. In addition to the 31% of Americans who identify as Democrats, another 16% initially say they are independents but when probed say they lean to the Democratic Party. An equivalent percentage, 16%, say they are independent but lean to the Republican Party, on top of the 25% of Americans identifying as Republicans. All told, then, 47% of Americans identify as Democrats or lean to the Democratic Party, and 41% identify as Republicans or lean to the Republican Party.

Democrats have held at least a nominal advantage on this measure of party affiliation in all but three years since Gallup began asking the "partisan lean" follow-up in 1991. During this time, Democrats' advantage has been as high as 12 points, in 2008. However, that lead virtually disappeared by 2010, although Democrats have re-established an edge in the last two years.


Americans are increasingly declaring independence from the political parties. It is not uncommon for the percentage of independents to rise in a non-election year, as 2013 was. Still, the general trend in recent years, including the 2012 election year, has been toward greater percentages of Americans identifying with neither the Republican Party nor the Democratic Party, although most still admit to leaning toward one of the parties.

The rise in political independence is likely an outgrowth of Americans' record or near-record negative views of the two major U.S. parties, of Congress, and their low level of trust in government more generally.

The increased independence adds a greater level of unpredictability to this year's congressional midterm elections. Because U.S. voters are less anchored to the parties than ever before, it's not clear what kind of appeals may be most effective to winning votes. But with Americans increasingly eschewing party labels for themselves, candidates who are less closely aligned to their party or its prevailing doctrine may benefit.

Survey Methods

Results are based on aggregated telephone interviews from 13 separate Gallup polls conducted in 2013, with a random sample of 18,871 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.

For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±1 percentage point at the 95% confidence level.

Interviews are conducted with respondents on landline telephones and cellular phones, with interviews conducted in Spanish for respondents who are primarily Spanish-speaking. Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by region. Landline and cell telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods. Landline respondents are chosen at random within each household on the basis of which member had the most recent birthday.

Samples are weighted to correct for unequal selection probability, nonresponse, and double coverage of landline and cell users in the two sampling frames. They are also weighted to match the national demographics of gender, age, race, Hispanic ethnicity, education, region, population density, and phone status (cellphone only/landline only/both, and cellphone mostly). Demographic weighting targets are based on the March 2012 Current Population Survey figures for the aged 18 and older U.S. population. Phone status targets are based on the July-December 2011 National Health Interview Survey. Population density targets are based on the 2010 census. All reported margins of sampling error include the computed design effects for weighting.

In addition to sampling error, question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of public opinion polls.

For more details on Gallup's polling methodology, visit

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Why is the Middle East in Flames? What is behind the hatred between Islam sects the Sunni and Shi'a?


According to The New American Encyclopedic Dictionary, "An Exhaustive Dictionary of The English Language Practical and Comprehensive published by J. A. Hill & Company of New York in 1906, "bias" of things not material is defined as: "The state of mentally or morally inclining to one side; inclination of the mind, heart or will; that which causes such an inclination, leaning or tendency."

In Crabb: English Synonyms, Crabb thus distinguishes between bias, prepossession, and prejudice: "Bias marks the state of the mind; prepossession applies either to the general or particular state of the feelings, prejudice is employed only for opinions. Children may receive an early bias that influences their future character and destiny. Prepossessions spring from casualties; they do not exist in young minds. Prejudices are the fruits of a contracted education. A bias may be overpowered, a prepossession overcome, and a prejudice corrected or removed. We may be biased for or against; we are always prepossessed in favor, and mostly prejudiced against.

Is there is a bias in America based on suspicion of the intent of the Muslim people's of the world and is it based on the history and modern actions of the Muslim world, in particular the actions of the mainstream Muslim factions. The majority of Muslims belong to one of two denominations, the Sunni and the Shi'a.

According to Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, in Muslim tradition, Muhammad is viewed as the last and the greatest in a series of prophets—as the man closest to perfection, the possessor of all virtues. For the last 22 years of his life, in 610 AD, beginning at age 40, Muhammad started receiving revelations from God. The content of these revelations, known as the Qur'an, was memorized and recorded by his companions. It has been 1400 years since Muhammad started receiving revelations from God.

Sunni Muslims are the largest denomination of Islam, comprising up to 90% or nine-tenths of the total Muslim population in the world. They are often referred to as Ahl as-Sunnah wa’l-Jamā‘h or Ahl as-Sunnah.

The word Sunni comes from the word sunnah, which means the teachings and actions or examples of the Islamic prophet, Muhammad. Therefore, the term "Sunni" refers to those who follow or maintain the sunnah of the prophet Muhammad.

The Sunni believe that Muhammad did not specifically appoint a successor to lead the Muslim ummah (community) before his death, and after an initial period of confusion, a group of his most prominent companions gathered and elected Abu Bakr Siddique—Muhammad's close friend and a father-in-law—as the first caliph of Islam. Sunni Muslims regard the first four caliphs—Abu Bakr, `Umar ibn al-Khattāb, Uthman Ibn Affan and Ali ibn Abu Talib—as "al-Khulafā’ur-Rāshidūn" or "The Rightly Guided Caliphs." Sunnis also believe that the position of caliph may be democratically chosen, but after the Rashidun, the position turned into a hereditary dynastic rule. After the fall of the Ottoman Empire in 1923, there has never been another caliph as widely recognized in the Muslim world.

Shia Islam (sometimes Shi'a or Shi'ite), is the second-largest denomination of Islam, comprising anywhere between 10% or one-tenth to 13% of the total Muslim population in the world. Shi'a Muslims—though a minority in the Muslim world—constitute the majority of the populations in Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Iran, and Iraq, as well as a plurality in Lebanon and Yemen.

In addition to believing in the authority of the Qur'an and teachings of the Muhammad, Shi'a believe that his family—the Ahl al-Bayt (the People of the House), including his descendants known as Imams—have special spiritual and political rule over the community and believe that Ali ibn Abi Talib, Muhammad's cousin and son-in-law, was the first of these Imams and was the rightful successor to Muhammad, and thus reject the legitimacy of the first three Rashidun caliphs.

The Shi'a Islamic faith is vast and inclusive of many different groups. There are various Shi'a theological beliefs, schools of jurisprudence, philosophical beliefs, and spiritual movements. The Shi'a identity emerged soon after the death of 'Umar Ibnil-Khattab—the second caliph—and Shi'a theology was formulated in the second century and the first Shi'a governments and societies were established by the end of the ninth century.

Kharijite (lit. "those who seceded") is a general term embracing a variety of Muslim sects which, while originally supporting the Caliphate of Ali, eventually seceded after his son Imam Hasan negotiated with Mu'awiya during the 7th Century Islamic civil war (First Fitna). Their complaint was that the Imam must be spiritually pure, and that Hasan's compromise with Mu'awiya was a compromise of his spiritual purity, and therefore of his legitimacy as Imam or Caliph. While there are few remaining Kharijite or Kharijite-related groups, the term is sometimes used to denote Muslims who refuse to compromise with those with whom they disagree.

Sufism is a mystical-ascetic form of Islam. By focusing on the more spiritual aspects of religion, Sufis strive to obtain direct experience of God by making use of "intuitive and emotional faculties" that one must be trained to use. Sufis usually considered Sufism to be complementary to orthodox Islam.

Once Muhammad lived and provided the Qur'an by 632 AD the various factions fought a 7th century civil war before undertaking 500 years of war against the Christians for control of the Western World. The initial Muslim conquest of Syria in the 7th century under the Rashidun Caliphs began the battle between the Christians and Muslims. After the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Christians and Muslims the wars ended with Muslims in control of most Middle East nations and Christianity split between the Latin and Greek sects.

By the time Christianity reached about 1400 years of age the factions within Christianity forced the Protestant Reformation in the 16th and 17th centuries and the break up of Christianity into many independent denominations.

Ironically, the Muslim factions have now existed for 1400 years and in country after country they have turned on each other in brutal wars, suppression of competing sects, and acts of genocide that have left a sense of fear, distrust and anxiety in the Christian and Jewish worlds. Is it not surprising? If the Muslim sects can justify Holy Wars against each other in this modern age what is to stop wars with us? Just look at the tens of thousands of civilian Muslim deaths at the hands of radical Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan. This is in the news every day.

History is a brutal lesson in fact over fiction. The origins of terrorism within the Muslim factions is no surprise as radical extremists with a religious foundation have been around for centuries. There is no single voice for the Muslim world and no central control of order to that world. Until those elements of the Muslim world can overcome their own hatred for each other and then their hatred for the Christian and Jewish so called infidels, bias will exist and caution is warranted.

Just as the Christians had to overcome the violence and bloodshed of the ill advised Crusades and the Protestant Reformation in order for Christianity to evolve, so to must the Muslim world overcome the bitter wars and rivalry of secular and non-secular violence and the offshoots of terrorism that attempt to destroy any perceived effort to threaten the single domination of one religious sect over any government in a multi-cultural and religiously diverse world.

Any bias of unease or misunderstanding on the part of Americans toward the Muslim world can be changed, if the Muslim world evolves as other religions have evolved. When radicalism and terrorism are set aside, and they exist in all cultures and religions, there are far more similarities between Christians and Muslims than differences and both share the same God or Allah.  Finally, within every culture or religion are good people.


Monday, June 16, 2014

Obama's Whimsical Pollyanna approach to Foreign Policy failed - Now What???


When President Obama was elected into office six long years ago we were promised everything under the sun and for the most part we have been struggling to find the light at the end of the tunnel of disappointments.

No where was it more true than in the area of foreign policy where the president promised to close Guantanamo prison, get out of Iraq, get out of Afghanistan, bring peace to the Israelis and Palestinians, stop Iran, stop North Korea, stop Russia, solve the Middle East peace problems, and, well you've all heard the litany of promises.

Back then it was heresy to say the newly elected Obama had no foreign policy experience, in fact no administrative experience either, but everyone gave him the benefit of the doubt.  For six years the liberal media has ignored, explained away or covered up the astounding failures of Obama and aided the president in blaming any problems on George Bush, as if that meant Obama didn't have to do anything because it was Bush's fault.

Even Franklin Roosevelt, the most effective of all Democrat liberal presidents, who was elected at the beginning of the Great Depression, the one that was still far worse than what Obama inherited, didn't spend the next six years blaming Hoover and the Republicans for the mess we were in.  In fact, he reached out to Hoover to help him put America back to work and then help with World War II preparations.

That would be like Obama asking Romney to help him fix the problems of America because Romney, like Hoover, was experienced, could manage and could create policy that worked.  Needless to say Obama would never stoop so low as to ask a Republican with a mind of his own to help America.  It was far more important to blame everything on the Republicans forever.

Rabid partisanship and inflammatory rhetoric were Obama's tools to deflect criticism and explain away failure and the media let him get away with it as did his own party.  So Obama spent the last six years with an almost disinterested approach to foreign policy.  I mean the one event in which he was personally involved and took an active role was the killing of Osama Bin Laden, the unarmed Bin Laden that is.

Have things changed?  Today his decision to pull troops out of Iraq has resulted in one of the worst blood baths since he took office.  Because of his policy failures we are going to be back in Iraq one way or the other just to help stabilize he Middle East.

So how does our cerebral and aloof president handle this world threatening crisis?  Well, he is out playing two rounds of golf today at a Democrat fundraiser.  Need I say more about his whimsical and Pollyanna approach to foreign policy?