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Martin Eden

Martin Eden's Journal
Martin Eden's Journal
February 22, 2024

"CALLED BY GOD" -- God's voice in their head, or their own ego?

The article cites the call to spread the word and to convert, but does not reference biblical passages calling for use of the sword or other means to force their religion onto others.

THAT is the calling of their own self righteousness and EGO, which is a manifestion of their sense of superiority over the judgment and the rights of others.

It is narrow minded zealotry, and un-American. Religious freedom is the right to worship the faith of our choosing, or none at all -- NOT forcing our own beliefs onto others.

I understand that many Evangelicals sincerely believe, however misguided, their efforts to make America a "Christian" nation is doing God's work and is necessary for the salvation of our country.

Their efforts might engender less hostility if not for the sheer hypocrisy of the political ideology and monied intetests they have embraced.

They are NOT "Pro Life" in so many of the policies they support and push. The latest IVF issue can deter couples from starting families, and forcing women to full term with unviable and unwanted pregnancies including by rape can threaten women's lives and change their course away from having subsequent children. Their intolerance for LGBTQ people has driven youngsters to suicide, and fostered violence against them.

Evangelicals also support policies which favor the rich over the poor, and deregulating polluting industries which spew environmental toxins that shorten lives and cause myriad afflictions especially hazardous to the embryo and fetus they ostensibly care so much about.

Finally, they essentially worship the would-be dictator who is eager to turn America into an authoritarian state like that of his idol, Vlad Putin. Our freedoms are threatened on multiple fronts by holier-than-thou Evangelicals. If they are actually doing "God's work" then I want nothing to do with such an evil entity.

February 21, 2024

No, I didn't

Nowhere in my post did I explicitly state or imply, in the least, that "Palestinians are singularly bloodthirsty."

In order for someone to logically infer such intent on my part would require a written passage in my post comparing Palestinians to other groups in similar situations who do not have a long record of terrorist attacks. I would be hard pressed to find a situation sufficiently analogous (within the historical context of the Middle East and the holy city of Jerusalem) to the generational oppression of Palestinians by the state of Israel, systematically dispossessing them of their homeland.

Such analogies are always flawed, at least to some extent. I feel it necessary to point out that in your first response to me you cited the example of our war in Vietnam and that they did not commit acts of terrorism against us after the American military finally left their country. At face value your analogy is more "pejorative" towards the Palestinians, since the Vietnamese refrained from terrorism whereas the Palestinians have not. However, I don't think that was your intent. And apparently it's necessary to point out that our conflict with the Vietnamese essentially ended with our departure, while the I/P conflict goes on.

I understand you took issue with my question citing the possibility that the slaughter and trauma inflicted upon the Palestinian people by the Israeli military could recruit more terrorists among survivors filled with hatred and a thirst for revenge for their family members who were killed.

I was taken somewhat aback by your inference that I was somehow trying to paint Palestinians as "singularly bloodthirsty." On the contrary, I believe hatred and revenge are a natural human response to seeing family members including women and children blown to bits when all they're trying to do is flee the violence and live their lives. Of course, you and I would never know how we would feel and respond to such devastating trauma, and I hope we never will.

But history, as well as current events, have shown that some groups engage in terrorism with far less provocation and personal trauma. For example, rightwing acts of domestic terrorism in our own country have been carried out by people who have lives of comfort and freedom compared to the horrors experienced by Palestinians in Gaza.

If what I've written here has not convinced you I had no intent to imply, whatsoever, that Palestinians are more inherently inclined towards terrorism, then I really don't know what else to say.


Peace,
Martin

February 20, 2024

Is Netanyahu breeding more terrorists than he's killing?

That question can't be answered with any certainty, but I think it's relevant if the long term objective is to reduce the threat of terrorism.

I think we can be fairly certain that a large percent of Palestinian survivors in Gaza have suffered both physical and emotional trauma, with loved ones killed by Israeli bombardments. I think it likely that hatred and thirst for revenge will swell the numbers of eager recruits for Hamas or whatever takes its place.

In other words, I think Netanyahu's victory will be pyrrhic at best. I also suspect his motives are not confined to quelling terrorism. It's no secret Netanyahu and his hardline coalition oppose any two state solution. Their long term objective is a greater Israel encompassing all the promised land.

Given the projected demographics of a single state with a healthy Palestinian population, in a few generations Jews could be a minority in the Jewish State.

That development is totally unacceptable to Netanyahu and his ilk, which means the Palestinian problem needs to be solved. One option would be an apartheid state. The other is ethnic cleansing and/or forced dispora.

Looks like we're seeing the latter option in action.

If you point out the horrible atrocity of Oct 7 and argue that Hamas would do the same or worse to the Jewish population if it could, I'd say you're absolutely right.

There is no end in sight to this conflict, and I can't offer a viable solution.

But let's not pretend Netanyahu's military campaign is entirely justified as a purely defensive measure to quell Palestinian terrorism. The long term objective of a Greater Israel is at work here.

One can argue the necessity of that for the survival of the Jewish State, but one must also acknowledge that involves disposessing the Palestinians of their former homeland.

February 19, 2024

From the article: "People feel that he understands them"

For a con man to be successful, he has to understand his mark. He needs the people he cons to think he has their backs, even though he's just grifting for their money and their votes.

Of course, not all evangelical Trump voters are being conned. He embodies the greed, racism, and cruelty that still simmers in these bible-thumping hypocrites. They have the ears to hear dog whistles blown by the likes of Ronald Reagan, but Trump has a bullhorn and they love him for it.

Let's not forget the Bible Belt of God-fearing Christians was the home of Jim Crow and the KKK. They could join a lynch mob on Saturday then go to church on Sunday -- not to repent the horrible sin but to validate their moral superiority.

February 1, 2024

The RACISM during Obama's presidency was directed AT him

Not coming FROM him.

The plain fact of the matter is rightwingers just could not abide having a mixed race Black president named Barack Hussein Obama.

Who was incredibly intelligent, articulate, charming, witty, and an unimpeachable servant of the American people.

Nikki Haley, like all Republicans when truth doesn't serve their purpose (it rarely does) employ PROJECTION -- accusing their opponents of their own bad behavior.

January 31, 2024

That wouldn't change what the Republican Party has been wanting to do for decades

They want to destroy FDR's New Deal and LBJ's Great Society. They can't attack these popular programs by frontal assault, so they do everything they can to undermine them.

Including jacking up federal budget deficits with huge tax cuts for wealthy individuals and highly profitable corporations. They are NOT fiscal conservatives. They need huge budget deficits to "starve the beast" then claim these "entitlement" programs are no longer affordable.

Working Americans already paid for these EARNED BENEFITS with deductions from every paycheck. Republicans scream CLASS WARFARE when Democrats advocate taxing the rich, but the plain fact of the matter is the oligarchs who fund the political careers of Republicans have bern waging and winning class warfare since Reagan.

Their greed knows no bounds. They're coming after the earned benefits we worked hard for all our lives. Transfer of wealth flows upward, not the other way around.

Which begs the question:
Why do so many Joe 6-pack types vote for them?

January 27, 2024

Netanyahu thought peace was being purchased with Qatari cash going to Hamas

Obviously, the Israeli prime minister and his intelligence services were tragically mistaken.

Was it really that difficult to assess the intent of Hamas, given their sworn goal to eradicate the Jewish state? While the cash and the work permits marginally improved conditions in the Gaza strip, it hardly satisfied the statehood aspirations of the Palestinian people or resolved the overall conflict evidenced by the ongoing violent flare-ups in Jerusalem and the West Bank.

The conflict is one of seemingly irreconcilable differences between two peoples who both want the same relatively small land of what was once Palestine on older maps, but is now Israel.

How can this be resolved, especially given the historical religious significance of Jerusalem as the center of a Holy Land for Jews, Muslims, and Christians?

Palestinians are unwilling to accept disapora, departing their homeland with their people scattered as residents into other Arab countries.

The Jewish people who survived the Holocaust had historical roots in the Holy Land, and understandably believed their future depended on having their own nation state where they would not be a minority subject to shifting tides of prejudice against them.

As an American born in 1957 who has followed politics since the Vietnam War, the only solution I can think of to resolve this conflict is for the two peoples to learn to live together peacefully in a single nation.

I have never been religious, but do have some understanding of the compelling significance Jerusalem and the Holy Land has for the people of all three major Abrahamic religions. If they truly embrace the core tenets of their faiths which all worship the monotheistic God of Abraham, should not Jerusalem be an international city of peace and brotherhood?

Yes, I know the two-state solution has long been embraced by the United States and much of the international community, but I really don't see ANY Israeli government forcibly removing West Bank settlers from their homes (some of which have been lived in for generations) -- especially as a series of events triggered by the Oct 7 atrocity committed by Hamas.

Perhaps, almost certainly, the single state of peace and brotherhood is an even more unlikely scenario.

And so we go on. The long history of horrible violence between the faithful is an inescapable feature of human civilization.

January 22, 2024

Great post. My condolences for the passing of a great lady.

I too was fortunate to have an Aunt who dedicated her life to advancing the cause of social and economic justice. Aunt Kate immigrated from Croatia in 1907, and went to work in Chicago factories at age 15. She became an organizer, and late in life was one of three ladies featured in the Oscar nominated 1976 documentary Union Maids.

Katherine Hyndman was the most caring person I've ever known. She loved this country, but was jailed for 10 months during the McCarthy era for her political activities and never permitted to become a citizen.

She passed when I was twenty years old, and I regret that I didn't more fully appreciate her until I grew up some more.

Rest in peace, great ladies. You did your share, and then some.

January 21, 2024

The expansion of Jewish settlements in the West Bank render a Palestinian state there next to impossible

Will those settlers voluntarily abandon their homes, some of which have been lived in for generations?

Will ANY Israeli government forcibly remove them, or withdraw all state run security?

Honestly, I don't see any of that happening.

I do NOT in any way support Netanyahu or his policies, or the settlements. I'm pointing out facts on the ground which I think are a nearly insurmountable obstacle to the establishment of a sovereign Palestinian state in the West Bank. How could there be while Israeli forces control the settlements and the roads connecting them?

The Oct 7 atrocity committed by Hamas followed by the slaughter and humanitarian crisis in Gaza has renewed efforts towards the two state solution, understandably so. The violence and the suffering must end.

I'm no expert on Israeli domestic politics but I read the news and am aware of the widespread protests against Netanyahu and his plan to strip power from the courts BEFORE Oct 7. I doubt he'll survive the next election, and a more centrist government may come to power.

But is it politically viable to forcibly remove the West Bank settlers from their homes after a series of events triggered by Hamas murdering 1200 Israeli civilians and holding hundreds more hostage?

For much of the world (myself included) the deaths of 24,000+ Palestinians and the utter devastation of Gaza have made it clear that Palestinians need a secure homeland with self determination.

Many Israelis may feel the same way, but I anticipate many more will stand against the forcible removal of Israelis from their homes to make way for a Palestinian state.

The actions of Hamas will not have succeeded in eradicating Jews "from the river to the sea" but their atrocity will have sparked the ceding of lands to empower the Palestinian people.

You and I will not necessarily view the sequence of events in that manner, but rest assured the Isreali hardliners who've won many elections will push the narrative that forcibly removing Isrealis from their homes would prove the effectiveness of the terrorist atrocity committed by Hamas.

How would anyone feel if their daughter was raped and murdered at that music festival, then their own government forcibly removed them from their homes?

If not in the West Bank, would a Palestinian state be viable in the tiny Gaza strip?

January 20, 2024

Haley is saying that justice and accountability before the law are "bad for America"

Granting a criminal former president what amounts to retroactive immunity would neither be good for our country nor bring the American people together.

The only thing that will bring Americans together is to embrace the highest ideals which make America truly great --

Equal justice before the law;

All human beings have equal rights regardless of race, religion, and gender;

Government of, by, and for the people;

Voting rights unimpeded by partisan suppression or intimidation;

Constitutional rule of law, not the dictates of one person or faction.



The person whom Nikki Haley declares she would pardon is not only the antithesis of those highest ideals; he is a grave threat to them.

To grant him unequal and preferential treatment above the law is a rejection of the highest ideals which are the meaning and the soul of America -- what we all need to embace if we are to unite in building a better future.

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