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H2O Man

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Member since: Mon Dec 29, 2003, 07:49 PM
Number of posts: 65,453

Journal Archives

The Media vs President Obama

In the past week, I have been focused on the issue of how the media engages in perception management. If one were to believe the news -- specifically from yesterday afternoon until this morning -- it would seem that the United States is losing the war with ISIS, because of the weakness of President Obama. Last night on MSNBC, even Chris Matthews acted as if President Obama had somehow let the nation down, by not announcing that a million troops were being sent to Iraq, and martial law declared in the United States.

Perhaps the only sane voice heard on MSNBC and CNN has been that of Malcolm Nance. I noted that another forum member had an OP about Mr. Nance two days ago; shortly before it “sank,” another forum member questioned who Nance is? It is difficult to imagine how the public could have informed opinions on American policy on ISIS, without an awareness of Malcolm Nance and his beliefs on the topic.

If the media’s intention was to inform the public -- to provide rational, factual information that appealed to the public’s intellectual potential -- Mr. Nance would be provided with a bit longer than 40 seconds to speak. But instead, the general public is far more familiar with what Donald Trump says about President Obama betraying the nation, than Mr. Nance’s saying that President Obama is approaching the issue in the best way possible.

The result is that much of the public believes that sending ground troops to Iraq and/or Syria would lessen the chances of domestic “lone wolf” terrorist attacks. A growing number of republicans actually are convinced that Donald Trump could make the United States “safer” than has President Obama. And even those Democrats who are unfamiliar with Malcolm Nance know who Donald Trump is. Thus, even they tend to discuss ISIS et al in the context of the definitions provided by the media and Donald Trump.

I’m not in full agreement with President Obama. I do not favor an emphasis on military action to “defeat” ISIS. By definition, this is not a “problem” that the military can solve by killing “bad guys.” But I believe his approach is sane, while the republican-media approach is insane. It is troubling to see the nation being swayed by the drum-beats for war.

When the Music's Over .....

President Obama will address the nation tonight at 8 pm/est. This rare Oval Office address will focus on the threat of terrorism, and the US policy towards ISIS. I find myself thinking that it is a shame this President did not make more use of this uniquely powerful setting to speak to the nation during his years in office. President Obama is, in my opinion, at the same level as was President John F. Kennedy, in terms of his ability to communicate with the public -- with the pair being the most gifted in my lifetime.

I do think that the issues involving ISIS are important. I fear that the next president will likely get our country involved in yet another phase of the never-ending “war on terrorism.” And I do not deny that the brutal action that stained our society last week could easily become more common. Indeed, if a republican is elected, that will be the reality of life in the United States.

Yet, if one takes an objective look -- one that requires ignoring the rants on television news -- a woman in our country is at far greater risk of being murdered by a right-wing, white, christian terrorist in or near a Planned Parenthood, than being killed by ISIS. A young black man has a greater chance of being murdered by a police officer on the streets of America, than of being killed by ISIS. While I wish that President Obama could speak openly and honestly about the reality of terrorism in the United States, I understand that there is near zero chance that he will.

This is a strange and dangerous time in our nation’s history. While I do not agree with everything that is said on DU about current events and politics on this forum, I do enjoy reading the variety of opinions expressed here. I look forward to discussing people’s impressions of President Obama’s address tonight.

H2O Man

Two Questions

“Do you know we are ruled by TV?”
-- James Morrison; An American Prayer

Yesterday, I posted one of the long, dry essays that I enjoy writing, but that I did not anticipate would become a DU:GD best-seller. It was on the sociology of terrorism. Perhaps the final two paragraphs best summed up the message: in them I suggested that the media presents the “news” in a manner that is intended to limit the manner the audience interprets it.

I suggested that, for example, the fields of psychology and sociology provide different options for understanding current events, and that we benefit from applying some of these. The mere fact that so many corporations, and their congressional lap dogs, attack “science” when it comes to issues involving climate change, would seem to imply that science offers insights that those in power do not want you or I exposed to.

On CNN’s “Smerconish” on Saturday, it was reported that in the 1990’s -- in the period that Newt Gingrich & Co. were purposely breaking Congress -- the federal government cut all funding of studies on the psychology of gun violence. Thus, every so often, the media does contribute some information that should be important to national discussions. I’m not suggesting the media is all bad, or involved in a conspiracy, but rather that it is largely a product of corporations, and that corporate interests are not exactly the same as the general public’s.

This includes not only what news is reported, and what is ignored -- it also includes the media’s analysis of the news. Today’s television “news” has far more analysis being offered than back in the days when there were simply three networks, offering a half-hour per evening. It involves the influence that politicians often exercise in determining what will be reported, and how it will be presented. It is what decisions that the owners of a given media determine will translate into the largest financial gains.

Thus, my questions: Why do you think that Congress cut federal funding for studies of the psychology of gun violence? How might this impact the manner in which the media reports on the gun violence being covered in the news in recent weeks?

Thank you,
H2O Man

Jacobs vs Quillin

Daniel Jacobs scored an impressive first-round TKO victory over Peter “Kid Chocolate” Quillin last night. The bout, which was Jacobs’ third defense of his WBA middleweight title, featured two of the top four fighters in the division (the others being Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez). As both Jacobs and Quillin -- the only US fighters in the middleweight top ten -- are from Brooklyn, it was also for “neighborhood bragging rights.”

Quillin, who entered the ring undefeated, and who had previously held the WBO title, was considered the bigger puncher of the two. Although Jacob’s record had more KO victories, he was viewed as the better boxer. Thus, what took place last night was “proof” that anything can happen when two good fighters enter the ring.

Older, long-time residents of DU’s sports forum will recall that I have thought very highly of Daniel Jacobs since his amateur days. I had the opportunity to become acquainted with him back when he was an amateur, and have maintained a casual friendship with him since then. I was happy to see him win in such explosive fashion last night, and anticipate that he will help to unify the title in 2016.

The Sociology of Terrorism

The other day, on an OP/discussion of current events, I used the phrase “sociology of terrorism.” I was fully confident that dozens of friends here would respond, if only to address their interests in, or concerns about, that phrase. Or, at very least, that one or two of my beast fiends, who had graduated from a university pre-2000, would throw down, saying that the field of sociology had shown remarkable little interest in “terrorism.” That would have at least allowed me to respond, “Oh, true, up until President George W. Bush failed to protect this nation on 9/11. But since then, it has really opened up. Might I suggest that you learn what you’re talking about, before you attempt to engage me in a debate?”

But it didn’t happen. Oh, well. Life is at times harsh.

Historians and psychologists have long studied individual cases of violence; these conflicts include such things as fights, duels, and domestic violence. Likewise, historians and sociologists have long studied group violence; these conflicts include riots, battles, feuds, and warfare. More, psychologists have studied the personality structures of individuals who engage in “terrorism,” as have police, intelligence, and military strategists. But, to a surprisingly large degree, sociologists had ignored the dynamics of terrorism upon a society, until after 9/11.

Part of this may have resulted from the lack of an agreed-upon definition of the terms “terrorist” and “terrorism.” We see this general confusion fairly often in recent times, especially when the news media reports upon a white, christian male in the United States, who engages in an act or acts of gross violence against a specific group of people. Even without a university degree in sociology, most rational people understand that the fellow who recently went on a rampage at a Planned Parenthood office was indeed a terrorist -- despite the media’s attempts to deflect from that reality, by focusing upon possible mental illness.

In order to combat a threat -- such as terrorism -- a population must know what it is, and what it is not. Again, rational people can grasp that the Ku Klux Klan, dressed in white, hooded uniforms, was a terrorist organization. Yet they tend to have great difficulty in understanding that another organization, dressed in blue uniforms, often acts as a terrorist outfit, when entering a non-white residential area. But terrorism is a tactic, and quite often the tactic that is deemed “illegal” for one group to employ, is declared lawful when another group engages in it.

If one subscribes to the delusional definitions of Fox News, “terrorists” are currently limited to: (1) those people of the Middle East who oppose US policy; and (2) immigrants from Mexico. This type of error in perception helps to highlight another common cause of confusion that even intelligent people -- who never watch Fox News -- have frequently experienced. One man’s terrorist is often another man’s freedom fighter. A good example of an individual case would be that of Nelson Mandela -- and the young Mandela, who would be incarcerated, rather than the gentle, grandfatherly figure he would become. A couple of examples of groups would be the militia of the Thirteen Colonies back in 1776, and the Irish Republican Army in the early 1900s.

We also see attempts by the media to divide “terrorists” into two distinct sub-groups: domestic and international. While these descriptions do have some value -- when used properly -- too often the public is at risk of failure to see the connections, both direct and indirect, between our nation and the rest of the world. To put them into a correct context, it is important to consider the findings of various, post-9/11 studies. To consider: what the terrorist(s) hope to achieve; how the community of victims views the terrorist(s); and community responses

“Terrorism” is the systematic use of power, intimidation, and violence to achieve a goal. In our current cultural setting, terrorism has traditionally been associated with “politics”; in the past two decades, it has become increasingly “religious”; and in reality, there has almost always been political, religious, and economic dynamics associated with terrorism.

In a political context, the “terrorists” may be a group attempting to gain, or maintain, political power. The group could be a marginalized minority, or even the party in power. Religious terrorism is often closely related to political and economic terrorism, and is definitely as brutal and inhumane. It, too, seeks the power to murderer human beings, and intimidate the surviving community. And this includes attempting to have access to, and control of, local resources.

Their opposition seeks to neutralize and then defeat the terrorists. In doing so, they must also attempt to grab more power. This frequently involves resorting to violent reactions to the terrorists.

This still leaves the majority of the population, what we might refer to as the general public. In times of violent confrontations between the two other groups, the behavior of the general public is to seek safety. While such attempts can take numerous routes, what appears to be a very common feature is to accept symbols of security, over taking serious steps to confront the violence, and increase public safety. There are, of course, various theories regarding why symbols of security become so highly valued. Yet, in terms of “outcome,” the reality is that in the United States today, citizens frequently behave as a herd of animals.

Symbols represent a short-cut to fully thinking, and understanding, a concept. Constitutional rights are reduced to good in theory, but far too risky to exercise. A candidate’s flag pin can be confused for patriotism. Symbolic speech -- including “dog whistles” -- appeals to the group fears and anxieties.

Thus, we see that within a given society, “terrorism” has very different functions for various sub-groups. The sum total of these comprise what is known as its structural functionalism. Older forum members likely recognize this as being closely related to the theories of Emile Durkheim, regarding the impact of breaking of cultural rules. It takes on a more significant implication in today’s society, in the context of Durkheim’s famous “disorganized dust of individuals.”

A second theory that assists in understanding the “war on terrorism” -- and the radical Islamic war on the West -- is known as “Conflict Theory.” No matter if we are thinking of the most recent terrorist attack, or last week’s events at Planned Parenthood, certain core dynamics apply. There are numerous individuals and groups who feel justified in using gross violence, including the targeting of people who are not involved in the specific “cause” in any way. Again, we see the confusing of symbols (including symbolic actions) as more significant than actual human life. Indeed, even the tactic takes on more importance than anything and everything else.

By no coincidence, the third general theory on “terrorism” is known as “Symbolic Interactionism.” This involves the assumption that the general public will understand the message as the person or persons intend it. For a glaring example of the dangers of such shallow, concrete thinking, one might consider the Bush administration’s belief that “we will be viewed as liberators” when the US invaded Iraq. That assumption, that everyone everywhere defined their lives and goals in the exclusive world-view of George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, and Donald Rumsfeld, proved inaccurate, to say the least.

This raises a closely-related conflict: the republic right demands that President Obama use the term “radical Islamic terrorist.” Words, of course, are symbols, and frequently useful in human communications. The last US president, George W. Bush, had a habit of using provocative language. When he was confronted by republicans who told Bush his comments were appreciated in much of the world, W responded that the people from his hometown understood what he was saying. Thank goodness, at very least, that this president isn’t the mere shell of a man that Bush is.

Being able to watch and/or read “the news” is to be able to interpret it in a systematic way. In my opinion, far too many citizens are prone to interpreting the news in the structures created by that media. That is more than a failure to exercise rights and responsibilities associated with being an informed citizen -- it is dangerous.

I think that during our discussions of current events, it’s good for the DU community to take time to view these events in ways. Fields like psychology and sociology tend to present better ways to interpret the news, than does the media. While most of my writings are long, boring, and dry, I hope this OP provides some food for thought.

H2O Man

Re: Violence

Quite a few community members here are old enough to remember films from the Vietnam War on the evening news. It became a part of American culture: middle class families watching the war while they shared supper. It helped people to really understand the horrors of the war that young men were being sent to fight. And, regardless of if one supported or opposed the war, the media coverage was important.

This evening, as is becoming disturbingly common, I sat down to my evening meal, and watched the coverage of today’s explosive gun violence. As I type these words, a talking head on television is saying this incident was not “terrorism.” This eliminates any confidence one might have in this expert’s opinion -- unless one suspects this was merely a family picnic that went wrong at its end.

In the mid- to late 1960s and early ‘70s, the media’s coverage of the Vietnam War helped to spark a conversation on American policy. This included, of course, discussions about the specific weapons being used. But the larger discussion took a more nationalistic versus holistic view of that war, and to both Vietnam and the United States.

In most, though not all, of the incidents -- ranging from police and the public, to attacks such as the recent one at a Planned Parenthood -- involve a specific type of weapons. Since DU:GD does not allow debates about “gun control,” I sincerely request that anyone who responds to this OP avoid that specific topic. Trust that others recognize it as a valid topic for other settings; more, that most people interested in such discussions, already has some firm beliefs already.

What would be interesting to discuss is the level of violence in the United States. While statistics indicate that the rates of violent crime have been dropping, certain types of violent outbursts appear to becoming all too common. School shootings did not seem as frequent, back in the days of the Vietnam War playing out on the evening news.

Certainly, one major difference is the combination of all-day news channels, along with the internet. It’s not just that one can find information about the current outbreak of violence, but it actually seems harder to shut that information out. The major news sources have on-site reporting, and often shallow analysis of the violence. There is also meaningful information available, though one usually needs to look hard to find it.

The internet offers everything from serious analysis of violence both domestically and globally, to some absolute nonsense. One of the best things about DU, in my opinion, is the ability of insightful and informed people to have those serious, interesting conversations on issues such as this.

This is on my mind today, for a few reasons. Obviously, the evening news is covering today’s incident. Another is that I spent much of today, hanging out with my cousin. You may recall that an off-duty cop shot my cousin and his son in October of 2014. My cousin, seriously wounded, held his son in his arms, as the young man bled to death.

Today was particularly had for my cousin. It wasn’t that today’s date was significant. It was just that the utter horror of losing his son this way was really hitting him today. (The shit-head’s trial is supposed to start next month.)

Violence of this type takes a huge toll on a family, a community, and a society. There are many, many causes of violence …..indeed, the United States has had, overall, a fairly violent history. I’d be interested in hearing your opinions on this topic.

Thank you,
H2O Man

Rick Santorum & Gumby Control

Top-Secret external documents from the Rick Santorum presidential campaign indicate the former Pennsylvania Senator is preparing to engage in a last-ditch effort to cement his “last place” status. An uninformed source has assured WaterManNews.com that the republican candidate “has expressed great concern” that other republican candidates “are sounding more insanely out of touch with reality” than he is. The source hinted than Santorum may file a baseless writ with the US Supreme Court, demanding recognition as “the most delusional of all” candidates in the republican primary.

In preparation for the court case, Santorum advocated that medical providers at Planned Parenthood offices should be packing iron (Hard Ball; MSNBC; 12-1-15). Had Donald Trump made the same claim, there would be a tidal wave in media attention, and a rise in Trump’s poll numbers. The Santorum campaign claims this is evidence of a vast, left-wing media conspiracy to deny their candidate the contempt he has worked so hard to earn.

“Senator Santorum has been saying things that should result in ‘late-night’ comics having a field day,” an unnamed campaign aide noted. “For example, my husband has recently claimed that the terrorist attacks in Paris are 100% President Obama’s fault. Ricky has said, in a single speech, that when elected president, he will increase the bombing of ISIS; that President Obama is not bombing ISIS enough; that President Obama literally does not want to defeat ISIS, and thus hesitates to bomb them; and then, that bombing ISIS is the wrong tactic, and that as president, he would not pursue a bombing campaign. This was in front of a huge audience of almost a dozen people, yet the media ignores it.”

The campaign declined to confirm or deny rumors that they are seeking to hire the late Arthur Clokey to serve as Santorum’s top media advisor. Rumors continue to swirl that Santorum is preparing to offer Jeb Bush the vice presidential spot on a third-party ticket in 2016. “Ricky has always self-identified as the ‘Gumby’ of American politics,” said Mrs. Santorum. “Jeb Bush is the most obvious ‘Pokey.’ The two of them are discussing the option of creating the Gumby-Pokey Party, to appeal to all Americans who would prefer to live in a past that never existed. The campaign’s theme song will be ’The Hokey-Pokey,’ which holds the promise of turning this nation around.”

Dystopia of Endless Night

(1) “Before the Great War all intelligent people said: ‘We shall not have any more war, we are far too reasonable to let it happen, and our commerce and finance are so interlaced internationally that war is absolutely out of the question’. And then we produced the most gorgeous war ever seen.”
-- C. G. Jung

Intelligent people can debate if we are at risk of entering World War Three, or not. In part, it depends upon how one defines “world war.“ One can use the relatively limited context of WW1 and WW2, or of the majority of the most populous and economically- militarily powerful nations being involved in a number of theaters of warfare around the globe.

It is safe to say that while military conflicts may take place in some of the locations where previous wars have been fought, we no longer exist in the Industrial Age. The synergy of multi-national corporations -- more powerful than many modern nations -- in the high-tech world reduces the efficacy of the WW1-WW2 models.

The media tends to present a rather subjective package of news and analysis. Thus, for too many of the less-aware public, they project their anxieties into pseudo-wars, such as the infamous “war on Christmas,” or in the extreme violence of the white christian terrorist movement. When various sub-groups in a nation-state begin hostilities against other groups, it is generally in battles, feuds, and/or terrorism. Yet in sum total, there comes a time when, faced with crisis (or crises), this inner-strife can be as destructive as war with an external enemy.

In ancient times, people looked to Walter Cronkite to declare it: war was just, war was win-able, or a jungle stalemate. The voices of reason are less clear today, as the ghosts of generations of lies rise from their graves, and swirl around in massive miscommunication on the television, radio, and internet. Where have you gone, Uncle Walter? Our nation turns its lonely ears to you. But in the gyre, the falcon can no longer hear the falconer.

(2) “Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold. Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world. The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere, the ceremony of innocence is drowned; The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.”
-- W. B. Yeats

There is a Showtime documentary titled, “The Spymasters: CIA in the Crosshairs” that features interviews with all of the living directors of the agency. The “wise men” debate issues such as the proper response to terrorism; the efficacy of “torture”; and the agency’s unregulated use of drones. It attempts to address the conflict between the current use of drones, and President Ford’s law which forbid the agency from assassinating foreign leaders.

It fails to provide real context in the sense of President Kennedy’s decision to take tactical wartime operations away from the agency, and place that responsibility where it belongs -- with the military -- if we are to remain a nation of laws, guided by the Constitution. Indeed, the drone program allows the agency the ability to conduct strikes outside of the recognized theater of war, without oversight.

Those who do not subscribe to Showtime have the option of simply watching cable news, for a repulsive ad that asks, “Can a corporation have a subconscious?” Willard “Mitt” Romney certainly thinks so: corporations are people, he assured his republican audience, with passionate intensity. For those who worship the dollar, and who accept profit motives as gods, corporate greed becomes mutant soul.

The synergism of corporate greed, tribalism (in its negative potential), and militarism cuts a direct path to an assault upon the central theme of what this nation can stand for -- liberty and social justice, of government for the people, by the people. The best of politicians have anxious convictions; the worst propose walls to stop the migration of once huddled masses; those who attempt to give voice to reason are looked upon with suspicion; and compassion is declared weakness by the loudest voices.

(3) “I see fingers, hands, and shades of faces, reaching up but not quite touching the promised land. I pleas and prayers and a desperate whisper saying, ‘Oh, Lord, please give us a helping hand’.”
-- Jimi Hendrix

One of the curious dynamics in American society today is that “bad” people are more organized, and making better use of time, than “good” people. That is not to suggest this is either new, or true across the board. However, I am convinced that the rates of organized action has been expanding with the “bad” people, creating greater difficulties for those “good” people who are social-political activists and organizers.

This afternoon, on CNN, there was a “discussion” that featured a rabid republican and a gentle Democrat, regarding the gross violence aimed at Planned Parenthood. Locally, I know for a fact that Planned Parenthood has offered free services to a number of young men, primarily in the context of couples considering family planning. But, even if PP only offered services to females, it is of such value that every man should be actively supporting it.

Indeed, even if a person has sincere beliefs regarding abortion, and do not support it for their personal life choices, the best -- and only -- way to reduce unwanted pregnancies is to promote education, and to insure that birth control is readily available. Thus, even those who would not consider abortion as a personal choice, should definitely be supporting Planned Parenthood. Yet the republican woman on CNN attempted to present the “dog-whistles” from republican candidates, and the aggressively confrontational “protests” outside of medical clinics, as representing appropriate, constitutionally-endorsed behaviors.

Amendment 1’s reference to public demonstrations is intended -- among other things -- to allow group’s of citizens to call for an increase in rights, for a group that is currently being denied equal rights. There is no evidence that its intent is to protect, much less promote, a group’s demand to restrict the rights of others. Obviously, in the context of Constitutional Law (the decisions rendered by federal courts), even groups as toxic as the KKK are recognized as having the “right” to engage in public demonstrations. However, “rights” does not equal “license.”

Amendment 1 does not provide one with the “right” to harass people who are seeking medical services. It does not justify the threats that both health care providers and consumers are so frequently subjected to. That Bill of Rights is intended to protect and promote individual and group rights, not as a means of denying rights by way of threats and/or violence. And there is no question -- none! -- that the republican candidates are, by and large, actively sowing the seeds of poisoned thinking, that is sure to result in more and more violent outbursts.

By no coincidence, as the reporting on violence becomes the media’s obsession, more and more of the less-insightful among us uses the dangers as reason to cut back upon that Bill of Rights -- just as assuredly as all three branches of the federal government increasingly engage in “post-constitutional” behaviors and activities. The center of what represents the best potential of America no longer holds. The vacuum that is created allows for a Ben Carson to be considered, by a sizable number of republicans, as presidential timber -- and not in spite of his delusional religious system of thought, but rather, almost entirely because of it.

(4) “And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.”
-- John Lennon & Paul McCartney

Most political-social-cultural concepts have both a good and bad potential -- with lots of room in between. Just as Amendment 1 can be used to either promote social justice, or to bring about violent oppression, issues of “religion” in American society have spanned from Martin Luther King, Jr.’s contributions, to Jerry Falwell’s intolerance. As a general rule, insightful people make use of religion for self-examination, while the dull-witted use it to justify harsh judgments of others.

The self-righteous have used “religion” to justify the slaughter of Native Americans, the forced slavery of African-Americans, the obscene oppression of gay and lesbian people, and virtually every war in our nation’s history. Small surprise that their “religion” promotes the violence against Planned Parenthood, and the inhumanity that saturates the republican platform for dealing with the current migrations of human beings around the globe. There’s nothing more violent than that old-time religious self-righteousness.

There are large numbers of people who, while not “bad” per se, are adding their energies to the unconscious rituals of violence that are wrapped in flags, and/or found in perverted readings of esoteric texts. The sum total tends to discourage rational thinkers, who often find their efforts to advocate for social justice are frustrated by the sheer force of gross ignorance in motion. Yet, as Alfred, Lord Tennyson reminds us, “Come, my friends, ‘tis not too late to seek a newer world.”

We need the united efforts of women and men of good will, not the divisions that result from none of us being perfect, or all-knowing. It’s high time for us to celebrate the human potential.

(Thank you for reading the thoughts that I was thinking this afternoon, as I was doing some of the tasks in preparation for ceremony on Friday. My older son and daughter gathered 49 good-sized cobbles of white quartz, which holds heat very well. -- H2O man)

Boxing (11-28-15)

There are three boxing cards on television today. They include:

(1) On NBC: Jermall Charlo vs. Wilky Campfort, for Charlo’s IBF junior middleweight title;

(2) On HBO: Wladimir Klitschko vs. Tyson Fury, for Klitchko’s heavyweight title; and

(3) On Showtime: James DeGale vs. Lucian Bute, for DeGale’s IBF super middleweight title.

The NBC card comes on at 3 pm/est; the HBO card is at 4:30; and the Showtime card begins on Showtime Extreme at 8, then goes to regular Showtime for the two featured bouts.

All of these look to be entertaining bouts.

[Note: I am going to start writing for what is currently the most popular internet boxing site next week. I’ll be posting links here on this forum.]


“ Finally, it should be clear by now that a nation can be no stronger abroad than she is at home. Only an America which practices what it preaches about equal rights and social justice will be respected by those whose choice affects our future. Only an America which has fully educated its citizens is fully capable of tackling the complex problems and perceiving the hidden dangers of the world in which we live. And only an America which is growing and prospering economically can sustain the worldwide defenses of freedom, while demonstrating to all concerned the opportunities of our system and society.”

The above quote is from the speech that President John F. Kennedy planned to deliver in Dallas, on this day in 1963. The full speech is available by simply “googling: on the internet It is definitely worth reading.

In the decades since JFK’s death, there have been attempts to discredit him for a variety of reasons. By no coincidence whatsoever, the vast majority of these complaints sound indistinguishable from Richard Nixon’s petty resentments. Certainly, JFK was human, and was thus imperfect.

Others focus on his policies -- for example, relating to Vietnam -- and his administration’s legislative record. These are obviously important issues, and the source of meaningful study and discussion. Yet, it is important to do so in the context of a presidency that was unfinished, and within the social-political reality of the day. Again, the vast majority of his detractors sound rather republican -- especially when on the internet, they pretend to be otherwise.

These people lack the capacity to recognize those traits that real Democrats and members of the Democratic Left value …..including, of course, about JFK.

H2O Man
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