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message 1: by Justin (new)

Justin (justinbienvenue) My thoughts on how the world of politics and this presidential election is just as scary as the horror we watch or read.

http://jbienvenue.webs.com/apps/blog/...


Tara Woods Turner | 2063 comments And just like in the movies no one can hear me scream.


message 3: by Joanna (new)

Joanna Elm | 145 comments I wrote my thoughts on this horrific presidential election back in July
when I wrote Trump, Brexit & the Politics of Hate at www.joannaelm.com/trump-brexit-politi...
I could not have foreseen back then how much worse it would get. I'm a little surprised however that it took the video/audio with Trump talking about his assaults on women to make everyone sit up. His hate against decent people was visible way before then.


message 4: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy We really have to be careful about spreading hatred. I can't do much about the "other side," but as a Democrat, I can watch how I speak about issues. The other day, a little boy in my town library said, "Someone ought to shoot Donald Trump." I can't even begin to imagine what Trump supporters out there are saying about Mrs. Clinton.


message 5: by Mehreen (new)

Mehreen Ahmed (mehreen2) | 1911 comments Hatred begets hatred. Love begets love. Simple equation or is it not?


message 6: by J.J. (new)

J.J. Mainor | 2250 comments In previous cycles, you could always count on the superPACs to put out some unintentionally funny ads, but this one, the ads are about as bad as the candidates. I think Clinton's ads may be coming close to that where each new ad features someone more "disabled" or "pathetic" (in the sad, sympathetic way) than the last ad and reruns the same exact Trump clips as every other ad. It's at the point where her ads almost feel like self-parody as you wait to see who her next victim-of-the-week is going to be.


message 7: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 14977 comments I'm not sure both candidates deserve too many compliments, but I hope none is truly 'horrible'. Now that everything is 'leaked', 'hacked', 'recorded' and the amount of impeccable dudes (if such exist) in politics decreased dramatically. Plus things get 'engineered', 'staged', amplified and so on for a greater impact on audience


message 8: by GR (last edited Oct 19, 2016 06:37AM) (new)

GR Oliver | 479 comments Mehreen wrote: "Hatred begets hatred. Love begets love. Simple equation or is it not?"

Mehreen, I don't think people understand it. They're always saying that, but I wonder if they really know what it means. For instance: Does anybody know what, turn the other cheek, means? When you understand that statement, you look for other solutions to the problem. If you can't find any solutions and retaliate, you lost the game. You are no longer a human, but an animal.


message 9: by GR (new)

GR Oliver | 479 comments Nik wrote: "I'm not sure both candidates deserve too many compliments, but I hope none is truly 'horrible'. Now that everything is 'leaked', 'hacked', 'recorded' and the amount of impeccable dudes (if such exi..."

It's all entertainment. A big show. No brains, just voice. Years ago when we were doing campaigns for politians, a colleague once said to me, the presidency is a personality game. Whoever has the strongest personality wins.

HC has an aged personality. DT has a little boy personality. They are 180 degrees apart. It'll be interesting to see who get the office. Whoever gets the office, it show you the mentality of the US.


message 10: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 10770 comments What bothers me about this election is that I think it is impossible to see an outcome that is better than where we are now.


message 11: by Mehreen (last edited Oct 19, 2016 08:39PM) (new)

Mehreen Ahmed (mehreen2) | 1911 comments GR wrote: "Mehreen wrote: "Hatred begets hatred. Love begets love. Simple equation or is it not?"

Mehreen, I don't think people understand it. They're always saying that, but I wonder if they really know wha..."


Am I wrong to think that some days I feel we're living in an Orwellian dystopia? 1984 with it twisted newspeak laws.


message 12: by J.J. (new)

J.J. Mainor | 2250 comments Ian wrote: "What bothers me about this election is that I think it is impossible to see an outcome that is better than where we are now."

There is an unlikely scenario where a relative unknown, Evan McMullin, could become president if he manages to win Utah. Basically it goes that should neither candidate gets the 270 electoral votes needed to win, the election goes to the House of Representatives. It's unlikely the Republicans will lose the House if the party fares poorly because of Trump, so it is unlikely they will choose Clinton. If the establishment is truly looking for a Trump alternative, then it is very possible they could select McMullin over Trump should he win Utah.

It might seem fantastic, but apparently, McMullin has now pulled ahead of both candidates in Utah. http://www.sltrib.com/news/4485415-15...


message 13: by Graeme (last edited Oct 21, 2016 02:06PM) (new)

Graeme Rodaughan Mehreen wrote: "Am I wrong to think that some days I feel we're living in an Orwellian dystopia? 1984 with it twisted newspeak laws...."

[1] The forever war has been in play since world war II.

[2] The mass media is designed to attract and hold your attention long enough to pass advertising in front of you. (Not to tell you the truth - look there's Kim Khardashian...)

[3] There is a pill for every ill.

[4] You only get to choose those things that don't matter.

And so on, etc, etc.

1984 got blended with A Brave New World as fear and desire are relentlessly used by our current crop of rulers to keep us pacified and somnolent.

I will reiterate the unpopular message - Human society is dominated by predators who see the rest of us as prey.

We are simply cattle, kept for the value of our labour.


message 14: by Mehreen (new)

Mehreen Ahmed (mehreen2) | 1911 comments Graeme Rodaughan wrote: "Mehreen wrote: "Am I wrong to think that some days I feel we're living in an Orwellian dystopia? 1984 with it twisted newspeak laws...."

[1] The forever war has been in play since world war II.

[..."


I think so too.


message 15: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 10770 comments JJ has an intriguing possibility. Interestingly enough, at a dinner last night my daughter suggested a third party might come through. I dissed that suggestion then, but, well, imagine . . .


message 16: by Graeme (new)

Graeme Rodaughan Hi Ian, JJ, I would not be surprised should events play out that way.


message 17: by Eldon (new)

Eldon Farrell | 687 comments Graeme Rodaughan wrote: "Mehreen wrote: "Am I wrong to think that some days I feel we're living in an Orwellian dystopia? 1984 with it twisted newspeak laws...."

[1] The forever war has been in play since world war II.

[..."


Nice comparison Graeme :)


message 18: by Denise (new)

Denise Baer | 593 comments Since the election is approaching, I decided to broach the subject, no matter how controversial, to take a stand regarding our government’s approach to the Presidency and the way candidates campaign.

http://baerbookspress.com/life/a-political-plague/


message 19: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 14977 comments Denise wrote: "Since the election is approaching, I decided to broach the subject, no matter how controversial, to take a stand regarding our government’s approach to the Presidency and the way candidates campaig..."

Read with interest your post, Denise. Not sure I should voice opinions about internal organization of another country, but I found some of your points persuasive


message 20: by Denise (new)

Denise Baer | 593 comments Nik wrote: "Denise wrote: "Since the election is approaching, I decided to broach the subject, no matter how controversial, to take a stand regarding our government’s approach to the Presidency and the way can..."

We all have our opinions and I don't mind. I have had non-Americans want to discuss politics, but I usually stay clear of it. Since I posted about it, I think it's only naturally to assume people may comment about it.


message 21: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 10770 comments I agree that you should not comment about the politics of another country in general, but the US is a major exception because the US is extremely powerful, both militarily and economically, so whatever happens there affects a lot of other people who don't vote for it. Norma;lay, I assume that common sense will prevail in the US, but this election time, I hate to say this, but I am not so sure.


message 22: by J.J. (new)

J.J. Mainor | 2250 comments Denise wrote: "Since the election is approaching, I decided to broach the subject, no matter how controversial, to take a stand regarding our government’s approach to the Presidency and the way candidates campaig..."

Just a couple small quibbles...they don't change the message, but they're worth pointing out.

1) Ross Perot received almost 19% of the popular vote in 1992 and didn't turn it into a viable alternative int he future. Then again, maybe that was Perot's fault for not building on that support after the election.

2) I always find it funny when people say they're tired of Bushes and Clintons in the White House as if the Clintons are already a dynasty. After all we've only had 8 years of Clinton presidencies - I know the sentiment is that we're sick of dynasties and electing Hillary will establish the family as a presidential dynasty. I just find it funny how people put it.


message 23: by Eldon (new)

Eldon Farrell | 687 comments So as a Canadian I've always wondered what's the difference between an electoral vote and a popular vote? Isn't everyone's vote worth the same?


message 24: by J.J. (new)

J.J. Mainor | 2250 comments Technically the people don't select the President, the States do.

Each state gets one vote for each congressman - House + Senate members

The House of Representatives gives states a number of members based on the states' populations - more populous states get more Representatives.

The Senate gives each state 2 members regardless of size and population. The idea was that smaller states don't get shut out of the government by the larger states.

Because every states automatically gets 2 electors because of those 2 senate seats, smaller states get a disproportionate number of electors in relation to their population. It doesn't matter too much in the grand scheme of things with the number of votes coming from the House side of the equation, but yes, in a state like Nebraska, your vote counts slightly more than someone from California or Texas.

At one point in our history, the States had more power than they do today, and the Federal government's role was to unite their common interests and rule only over those areas, so in a sense, the states were selecting their leader, their representative. On top of that, the Founding Fathers weren't entirely certain the people could wisely choose the one man who would lead the entire country, so they gave that role to the state leadership.

Over time, laws have been passed to tie a state's votes to the will of their citizens, so nowadays, the electors vote according to the results in the state elections. It's not perfect and there have been instances where a President wins the electoral college after losing the popular vote, but we haven't been any worse off for it when it has happened.


message 25: by Eldon (new)

Eldon Farrell | 687 comments J.J. wrote: "Technically the people don't select the President, the States do.

Each state gets one vote for each congressman - House + Senate members

The House of Representatives gives states a number of memb..."


Fascinating. Thanks for the explanation :)


message 26: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 14977 comments Ian wrote: "I agree that you should not comment about the politics of another country in general, but the US is a major exception because the US is extremely powerful, both militarily and economically, so what..."

On external politics - sure, but for me - much less on the internal though


message 27: by J.J. (new)

J.J. Mainor | 2250 comments If you're looking at our foreign policy, it is open to criticism from outside. However a lot of what drives our politics is domestic, and someone from outside those walls doesn't always have a complete picture to temper their opinion. It's the same with us when we sit in one state and criticize the policies of another state.

I know we've talked about Brexit, and we all have opinions on that. Surely where it's a decision that affects the whole EU, it too is open for criticism from outside, however unless we're in Great Britain, and understand what the people within those borders are thinking, feeling, and dealing with, we can't truly understand what drove the vote.


message 28: by Denise (new)

Denise Baer | 593 comments J.J. wrote: "1) Ross Perot received almost 19% of the popular vote in 1992 and didn't turn it into a viable alternative int he future. Then again, maybe that was Perot's fault for not building on that support after the election.

2) I always find it funny when people say they're tired of Bushes and Clintons in the White House as if the Clintons are already a dynasty. After all we've only had 8 years of Clinton presidencies - I know the sentiment is that we're sick of dynasties and electing Hillary will establish the family as a presidential dynasty. I just find it funny how people put it. "


True about Ross Perot, but that doesn't mean another candidate can't make an alternative work.

As for the Clintons, they have become a dynasty in regards to politics even though he was president for 8-years ('93 to '01) but 8-years too many for me. Hillary ran for Senate in NY and she was Secretary of State, so we haven't been able to get away from them. But I get what you're saying.


message 29: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 10770 comments J.J. wrote: "If you're looking at our foreign policy, it is open to criticism from outside. However a lot of what drives our politics is domestic, and someone from outside those walls doesn't always have a comp..."

In my case, I guess it is more worry than anything. I would never try to influence how Americans vote, any more than I would want Americans to interfere with our voting. With these two candidates, I just hope that Congress rises to the occasion. My gut feel is they won't, and will rather descend into more bitter opposition to just about anything.


message 30: by J.J. (new)

J.J. Mainor | 2250 comments Denise wrote: "J.J. wrote: "1) Ross Perot received almost 19% of the popular vote in 1992 and didn't turn it into a viable alternative int he future. Then again, maybe that was Perot's fault for not building on t..."

I understand the sentiment, but like it or not, we've had dynasties since the beginning when John Adams and his son John Q Adams both served as President. We've had the Buchanans, the Roosevelts, the Kennedies. Our system was supposed to promote the citizen politician, but our politics are dominated by professionals.

When I hear Hillary and the other Democrats say "Trump is not qualified to be President," that makes me sick. She should stick to the point that he doesn't have the "temperament," because ultimately the Constitution lays out a very narrow set of qualifications to ensure that anyone in this country can be President. But to say he's not "qualified?" I hope when all these young girls come up to her and say they want to be President because of her, she tells them they can't be because they're not "qualified."


message 31: by J.J. (new)

J.J. Mainor | 2250 comments Ian wrote: "J.J. wrote: "If you're looking at our foreign policy, it is open to criticism from outside. However a lot of what drives our politics is domestic, and someone from outside those walls doesn't alway..."

What even most Americans don't seem to understand or like about our system is that our founding fathers intentionally designed the governing process to be slow and laborious. The Constitution gave the power to declare war to Congress, not the President because we don't want that kind of decision making to fall on one man. Our legislative process allows for the filibuster, allows for the opposition party to slow or block legislation, and requires this back and forth between the two houses because the founding fathers didn't want legislation rushed through and they wanted all parties to have a say in how the country is run, not just the majority.

The problem we've had is that politicians grew frustrated with the process. Presidents didn't want to deal with Congress every time they wanted to deploy troops, so they got Congress to cede some of that authority with the War Powers Act. Every time the majority party in Congress grows frustrated with the process, they change the rules to take away some of the voice the minority party was supposed to have. And what's troubling is the attitude among the public that the government is somehow broken because Congress has been gridlocked and legislation is not moving, but that is exactly what is supposed to happen. The real danger, and the fears you're talking about comes from a government that ignores the vast series of checks and balances our system contains, and pushes through bill after bill without discussion and without input from everyone affected.


message 32: by Denise (last edited Oct 29, 2016 07:55AM) (new)

Denise Baer | 593 comments J.J. wrote: "I understand the sentiment, but like it or not, we've had dynasties since the beginning when John Adams and his son John Q Adams both served as President. We've had the Buchanans, the Roosevelts, the Kennedies. Our system was supposed to promote the citizen politician, but our politics are dominated by professionals.

When I hear Hillary and the other Democrats say "Trump is not qualified to be President," that makes me sick. She should stick to the point that he doesn't have the "temperament," because ultimately the Constitution lays out a very narrow set of qualifications to ensure that anyone in this country can be President. But to say he's not "qualified?" I hope when all these young girls come up to her and say they want to be President because of her, she tells them they can't be because they're not "qualified." "


It doesn't matter about the dynasties. You seem a bit hung up on that. I don't like it and either do many other Americans. I'm here to hope for change in my lifetime, not prior or after. I hope this election or one in the near future will change all of this along with the 'dynasties'. We need new leadership and it isn't going to come from what we have now. The kind of people who say that's the way it is weren't the people who made changes. They weren't the one's who had led movements.

And I hope when young girls come up to Trump and say they want to be President that he doesn't grab their crotches.


message 33: by J.J. (new)

J.J. Mainor | 2250 comments There's no doubt we're in a period where things need to change. I would say I'm not so hung up on dynasties as I am about history in general. Sort of like people who try to claim that any of our recent Presidents are either the worst or the best in history, we really do need a broader perspective on our past before we all make such claims.

I think the bigger story might be the access to the candidates we have these days. Thanks to TV in the later half of the 20th century, and the internet/social media more recently, we get to see more of these people than we ever wanted to. Gone are the days when investigative journalism was nonexistent. Gone are the days when Presidential candidates could spend their entire campaign sitting on their front porch, letting people make the decision based on a scant few press releases. Who knows if our Presidents in the past were as bad as they are now? Who knows how many wouldn't have been in office if they had to go in front of TV audiences, or if they had people with microphones recording every private moment, or a 19th century Wikileaks publishing every private note they wrote to friends and loved ones. I'm sure if people had that kind of access to candidates behind-the-scenes, we'd have gone through this kind of voter revolt a long time ago.

As for your last statement about Trump, I would hope no one is letting their girls get that close to Trump in the first place...


message 34: by D. (new)

D. Thrush | 32 comments It feels like our election has turned into a reality show. I hope that we can change our system so there are more than 2 choices, elections are somehow federally funded so that someone who's not rich or connected can run, we get corporations away from buying favors through donations to politicians, and that our elected officials do their jobs and work together for the good of the country. I'd also like to see people treat each other with respect. It's ok to disagree. You don't have to be hateful about it. Any candidate that promotes hate is dangerous. I know... I'm dreaming.


message 35: by Mike (new)

Mike Robbins (mikerobbins) | 282 comments It does seem extraordinary that the electoral system in both the US and Britain make it so hard for "third" candidates and also deliver skewed results; it is not unusual for US presidential elections to be won on a minority of the vote, and in Britain the current government has an absolute majority on the basis of 37% of the votes cast, and just 24% of the electorate. If you don't live in a swing state or, in Britain, a marginal constituency, you might well not bother to vote. No wonder politics in both countries are so toxic.


message 36: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 10770 comments I don't think there is any ideal voting system. In NZ we have MMP, where every vote is allegedly of equal value, and third and fourth parties end up with representation. The problem then becomes there is no clear winner, and in the end there is horse trading to get a majority, and the winner can toss away as many of the policies they were elected on as they like, and replace them with exactly the opposite, if they so choose. The whole idea of voting was, as I always thought, to vote for the person who would do what you wanted done, but it doesn't work out like that. So the reality show leading up to the election might be as reasonable as anything. If they are not going to carry out their promised policies, why have policies?


message 37: by Alex (new)

Alex (asato) Ian wrote: "I don't think there is any ideal voting system. In NZ we have MMP, where every vote is allegedly of equal value, and third and fourth parties end up with representation. The problem then becomes th..."

MMP seems kind of complex. you get one nationwide party vote to determine proportionality of seats and then one vote for a specific MP who wins on plurality.

How about approval voting? in this one, you can vote for any number of candidates you want and the one with the most votes wins! wow, that sounds counter-intuitive, doesn't it? it does to me. well, it works like this: if you don't want a candidate to be elected, then you don't vote for them--it's basically a no confidence vote--but if you'd be okay with a candidate being elected, then vote for them.

here's a fun 2.5-minute presentation of approval voting: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rCWji...


message 38: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 10770 comments MMP is sort of complicated, and I suspect that some don't really understand it, nevertheless it works, sort of, until a government needs to be formed from the various numbers.

Approval voting sounds complicated too. For President, or mayor as in the video, that is fine (although I am not sure what happens if two essentially draw) but for a government we get back to states that get locked into a certain party, and you have a few swing states where it matters. (Replace states with whatever in your zone.)


message 39: by Alex (last edited Oct 30, 2016 05:47PM) (new)

Alex (asato) Ian wrote: "MMP is sort of complicated, and I suspect that some don't really understand it, nevertheless it works, sort of, until a government needs to be formed from the various numbers.

Approval voting soun..."


with a parliamentary system, as long as approval voting is implemented at the local level, then a third party could always get enough MPs in to be included in the government.

approval voting is pretty straightforward. just vote for all the candidates that you think will do a good job and don't vote for the ones that you think won't do a good job. then the one that most voters think will do a good job will get elected.

here's a pretty good 23-min video comparing the different voting methods and the "spoiler" pitfall of instant run-off and plurality (aka "first past the post"):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2q_eM...

D. wrote: "I hope that we can change our system so there are more than 2 choices, elections are somehow federally funded so that someone who's not rich or connected can run, we get corporations away from buying favors through donations to politicians, and that our elected officials do their jobs and work together for the good of the country. "

plurality voting can start to make this happen.


message 40: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 14977 comments Since many are dissatisfied with the current systems, a different one can be tried.
What would probably happen - the fervent supporters probably still vote for their candidate/party and award nothing to competitors, however it'll give more opportunities for undecided voters or hesitating between a few. And it's probably an advantageous system for multiple candidates, spreading points more evenly between a few, rather than favoring the leaders...
The results may be like in a recent Euro-vision contest - Ukraine came second on both spectators and jury votes, but won on the aggregate -:)


message 41: by Mehreen (new)

Mehreen Ahmed (mehreen2) | 1911 comments World politics is a nightmare. I have no idea how the Israel- Palestine issue will resolve in the end. About time that it did.


message 42: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 14977 comments Mehreen wrote: "World politics is a nightmare. I have no idea how the Israel- Palestine issue will resolve in the end. About time that it did."

The resolution is clear and 99% agreed. We might need braver politicians to be ready to put their signatures... The sooner the better. The window of opportunity may not be open forever.


message 43: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 10770 comments Nik wrote: "Mehreen wrote: "World politics is a nightmare. I have no idea how the Israel- Palestine issue will resolve in the end. About time that it did."

The resolution is clear and 99% agreed. We might nee..."


It should be clear, but I am far from convinced the relevant politicians see it.


message 44: by Michel (new)

Michel Poulin Having spent two years in Lebanon in the 1980s and having watched closely the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, I am not optimistic about a peaceful resolution. Too many opportunities have been missed or squandered and the present political leaders are too inflexible and dependent on hardliners for political support. The ideal solution would of course be a two state solution, with secure and equitable borders, living in mutual peace. However, it looks like Israel will continue to annex and colonize more and more of the West Bank, until a Palestinian state becomes totally non-viable. Then, the Palestinians will have no decent choice left to them but to either revolt violently (something that would end in a bloodbath due to Israel's military superiority) or submit and become the equivalent of serfs in a land totally controled by Israel.


message 45: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 14977 comments Michel wrote: "The ideal solution would of course be a two state solution, with secure and equitable borders, living in mutual peace. However, it looks like Israel will continue to annex and colonize more and more of the West Bank, until a Palestinian state becomes totally non-viable. ..."

I don't think settlements are the problem. Arik Sharon proved what happens when there is a will and completely vacated Gaza rather swiftly and dismantled all the settlements there. As far as I know, there are pretty much agreed maps covering 97% of the territory with agreed swaps for another 3%.

But Abu Mazen is afraid or maybe he truly doesn't want to recognize Israel, while Netaniyahu is comfy with how it is now.
A two-state is an official policy of Israel and Bibi urges Abu Mazen to negotiate, but is not particularly assertive.

Agree that the lull is hardly for the better and the situ can deteriorate.


message 46: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 10770 comments I think settlements are the problem. Sharon getting out of Gaza was one thing, but Gaza was not something Israel really wanted. The West bank is an entirely different matter, and the settlements are something of a pox. Will the Israeli settlers really vacate THAT MUCH territory, and if so, where will they live? Then there is the question of water. The Jordan river is essentially tapped out. Finally, someone has to do something about recompensing for the evictions in Israel when it was formed, and do something to create a realistic economy for the Arabs. Their problem now is there is hardly anyone left who knows what it was like to work in an unoccupied country. It is not easy.


message 47: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 14977 comments Ian, as far as I know the maps and the swaps were agreed and can be implemented. There were settlements in Sinai peninsula which we returned to Egypt in return for peace, in Gaza - vacated for nothing. The problem is not the settlements, the problem is that it appears there is no one willing to come to terms.
Why do you think anyone wants the West Bank or even a part of it? It's just a headache, nothing more. If we wanted, we could've annexed it. Why would Israel go through all the trouble to bring Arafat, establish Palestinian authority there, gradually transfer territories to its control?

Water? They can desalinate and bring it from Gaza. That's what Israel does.

Eviction? Israel has 16 % of Arab population whom no one evicted, enjoying the same rights as regular Israeli citizens. Those who left - their choice. Are Maori being compensated in NZ? -:)

Yeah, with ottomans, Brits, Jordan occupying the West Bank just in 20-s century, the territories were always occupied by someone. Does Palestinian authority do something to reach any peace accord or nothing at all?


message 48: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 10770 comments Nik wrote: "Ian, as far as I know the maps and the swaps were agreed and can be implemented. There were settlements in Sinai peninsula which we returned to Egypt in return for peace, in Gaza - vacated for noth..."
I am unaware that swaps have been agreed, but if there is a reference? If nobody wanted the West Bank, why are there so many settlements there, and it is not as if construction is stopping.
I am not sure the Palestinians could afford to desalinate water - it is rather energy intensive, and P:Palestine is not exactly a hotbed of prosperity.
It is generally accepted that during the Nakba, about 700,000 Palestinians were ejected, most forcibly, and over 600 villages were torched.
Are Maori being compensated in NZ? Actually, yes, and there has been quite an industry based around grievance claims over the last 30 years :-)
Of course the Palestinian authority is going to have to recognise Israel. Whether Israel was just is highly disputable (and the fact it was thought to be a great idea by Reinhardt Heydrich is suggestive that it is not) is beside the point. We can't go back, so Israel has to exist, and the Palestinians have to grit their teeth and accept they lost. But there are a number of other issues that also need sorting, and the UK and the US have to step up to the plate here, because much of what we have is due to their actions.


message 49: by Mehreen (last edited Oct 31, 2016 04:38PM) (new)

Mehreen Ahmed (mehreen2) | 1911 comments Palestine has been a bone of contention ever since it was taken to make Israel. That was not fair to the Palestinian people. But I blame Hitler for this. These were European Jews, and deserved to be settled in Europe not in the Middle East. I also sympathise for their 40 years of dispersion since they left Egypt, land of the Pharaoh. They had lost their diasporic identity until now. There are no easy solutions. It is a very difficult situation for the Arabs as well as the Jewish people. I propose a federation in the Middle East.
Because as far-fetched as it may sound, they are all Arabs at the end of the day, the Middle East which gave birth to the four great religions. God knows, they all deserve to live in the Middle East, Hitler or no Hitler.


message 50: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 14977 comments Ian wrote: "I am unaware that swaps have been agreed, but if there is a reference? If nobody wanted the West Bank, why are there so many settlements there, and it is not as if construction is stopping...."

Here is one of the versions and there probably tons of more:
http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/20...
Here it says that Abbas agreed to 2% swap, while Olmert wanted 6%. I heard later it was narrowed down to about 3%.
As of why settlements: If you look at the map of Israel - it has a very narrow strip in the middle. Suffering from attacks during it's short history, as I understand the settlements had a purpose to broaden that neck and form as a sort of an additional barrier. Not sure how these concerns are important anymore in terms of modern warfare. Current construction is to accommodate natural growth of the population there.
We (and I'm talking here of a vast majority of population) don't want the West bank, we don't claim it's ours, we have no interest in ruling Palestinians and nor in their lands and repeatedly try to pass it into responsible hands, asking in return for recognition and security assurances. Whether we try enough - it depends. Peres and Rabin tried hard, Olmert tried, Netaniyahu - probably not his prime concern, although he invites Abbas every once in a while to come to negotiations table.
Israel turned into a water empire now -:) All the costs were covered through water bills by citizens. Government didn't allocate a penny. And Palestine receives big donations from Arab world. If they use them purposefully - the problem will be solved.
Sure, there was a war since Arabs haven't accepted the UN partition plan and attacked Jews, while Jews accepted. I assume that many fled during the war, while many others remained and nothing bad happened to them. But if Maori are paid, I guess some monetary compensation idea was floated -:). But it's not a clear cut. For example all those evicted and their properties taken in Russia, Ukraine and other places after 1917 and ensuing Civil war and Intervention are far from being anywhere near any kind of compensation.
I don't know why Israel should be disputable. In the essence both Americas, Australia and New Zealand were occupied by settlers and indigenous population removed from their ancestral lands, killed and severely treated for centuries. At that, evils of the past shouldn't project onto the generations of people guilty in nothing.
Jews are indigenous people of this land, and many never left. As well as Arabs. Palestine as a state never existed, so the division between the main ethnic groups sounded natural. Of course, if Palestinians want to 'throw Jews into the sea' then it may look like a 'loss', but I think it should be a victory for them too, when they'd have their own independent state. The solution is known, just some guts are needed to take a deal..


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