Posted in HWH COMMENTARY, NEWS OF INTEREST

Hong Kong’s divide: Protests for democracy, rally for China

HWH Commentary: Communism is dead – because it worked in theory ONLY, not practice. Large parts of the world practiced it and large parts of the world suffered as a result. Only a tiny elite, ruling minority prospered under their own rule, which in essence made them a dictatorhip by committee.

If you call yourselves a democracy because you have free elections, but everyone in the country prefers the policies and practices of socialism, then you’re basically a monolithic system of governing, which in essence becomes communism if practiced long enough, since everyone in the nation can’t all be rich, but they can all be at the poverty line, which eventually demoralizes the populace, which then requires a military presence in the civilian population to keep the system that no longer works.

The only time systems of mass control work in providing a more equal balance is when in transition. Once the goal is met, nobody likes it, because it’s too confining and restrictive. Paradoxically, it is always the masses who want and seek and rise up to achieve that equal distribution, only to discover that it produced more disadvantages, rather than fewer.

China’s system has never worked. The reason it appeared to thrive at various times throughout history is because the Chinese people were convinced by their leaders that suffering was a necessary part of the plan.

China’s system lays all the decision-making into the hands of a few old men regarding every single detail of China’s population, land, resources, and on and on.

China’s old men are no different than anybody else’s old men. Old men can’t handle that much responsibility. Young men can’t handle that much responsibility. Nobody’s men can.

Suffering, suffering, suffering. You wear it well. What a lie you projected to the world. Suffering brings you peace, wealth, happiness, ingenuity, invention? Then why do you spend so much time stealing America’s inventions? 

Long live China as a democracy. If China becomes a democracy, then China keeps Hong Kong and Taiwan. Everyone is different, but equally worthy to pursue their people’s dreams. 

Not all Chinese are the same. Accept that reality as the beginning of what an ultimate Chinese Democracy will look like. Better than any other democracy.

You know how to do. You dreamed it for centuries.

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HONG KONG (AP) — Pro-democracy protesters marched on one side of Hong Kong’s famous harbor on Saturday to demand the government heed their demands. Across the water, a pro-government rally called for an end to the often violent protests.

The dueling demonstrations highlighted the political divide in the semiautonomous Chinese territory, which for 10 weeks has been rocked by protests that show no signs of relenting.

“The government right now doesn’t listen to the people, and the police are too violent,” said Bobby Tse, a 76-year-old retiree who watched the pro-democracy march from a bridge. “It didn’t used to be like this. We didn’t have to protest every week. But now even though we have protests every week, the government still gives no response.”

At the pro-government rally, speakers on a stage said they love both Hong Kong and China and asked the protesters why they are afraid of China. Supporters gave a thumbs-up to police officers and posed for photos with them. Leo Chen, a 47-year-old driver, said he came out because he wants peace in his city of 7.4 million people.

“Before, everyone in Hong Kong helped each other, it was very harmonious,” he said. “Now to see it become like this, I’m not happy, so I’ve come out to show a little strength.”Earlier Saturday, thousands of schoolteachers marched to the official residence of Hong Kong’s leader, Carrie Lam, to show support for the protesters, who have taken to the streets since early June and include many students.

Carrying signs that read “Protect the next generation” and umbrellas to ward off intermittent downpours, the teachers tied white ribbons to a metal fence near Government House. They said the government should answer the protesters’ demands and stop using what they called police violence to disperse demonstrators who have taken over streets and besieged and defaced government buildings.

“We want to protect our students, our youngsters, so teachers are willing to come out and speak for the youngsters, and also, to stand by them so they are not alone,” said Fung Wai-wah, president of the Hong Kong Professional Teachers’ Union, which organized the march.

The movement’s demands include Lam’s resignation, democratic elections and an independent investigation into police use of force. A rally in Victoria Park has been called for Sunday by a pro-democracy group that has organized three massive marches through central Hong Kong since June.

“Even though we’re all scared of getting arrested, we have to keep going,” said Minnie Lee, a 31-year-old logistics worker who joined the pro-democracy march. “What we are fighting for is democracy and our rights. We’re not doing anything wrong. If we stop now, things will only get worse.”

Tensions rose briefly after the march, with riot police deployed to chase down a group of pro-democracy protesters they said were assembling illegally outside their station, shining laser pointers and throwing eggs.

Officers formed a line on a nearby street, thumping their batons on their shields before charging.But by that time, most protesters had already melted away into the city’s densely populated Mong Kok district, leaving officers to face angry local residents, who told them to leave and accused them of being members of crime gangs. The police eventually left without firing tear gas.

Members of China’s paramilitary People’s Armed Police force have been training this week across the border in Shenzhen, fueling speculation that they could be sent in to suppress the protests. Officers didn’t appear to hold major drills on Saturday, but could be seen doing jumping jacks and stretching inside a sports stadium. Dozens of army-green armored carriers and trucks were parked inside and outside the facility.

The Hong Kong police, however, have said they are capable of handling the protests.

“I can tell you we’re confident the police have the capability to maintain law and order,” Yeung Man-pun, commander of the Kowloon City district, said Friday when asked about the possibility of a deployment of mainland security forces.

Outside of Hong Kong, demonstrations were held in support of both the pro-democracy movement and China.In Australia, at least 200 protesters descended on Sydney Town Hall, chanting “Long live China” and singing the Chinese national anthem, while a protest in support of the pro-democracy movement continued in Melbourne.

The Melbourne rally had turned ugly on Friday night, with police moving in to separate some 100 pro-China protesters from those sympathetic to Hong Kong. Saturday’s protest in the southern city was peaceful.

In Taiwan, people held a flash mob demonstration in Taipei, the island’s capital, in support of the Hong Kong protests.

___Associated Press writer Ken Moritsugu, videojournalist Yves Dam Van and news assistant Phoebe Lai in Hong Kong and videojournalist Dake Kang in Shenzhen, China, contributed to this report.

Source: Hong Kong’s divide: Protests for democracy, rally for China






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Posted in NEWS OF INTEREST, POLITICS

Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East? Netanyahu’s comments have shattered that illusion 

…Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East?

Netanyahu’s comments have shattered that illusion.

His comments that the country belongs to ‘Jewish people alone’ strike to the heart of the nature of Israel.

Ben White The Independent Voices

Netanyahu is desperate, in the face of an electoral challenge from former military chiefs of staff as well as the looming indictments for corruption allegations ( EPA )

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu was back in the headlines on Sunday, after declaring on social media that “Israel is not a state of all its citizens”. The Likud leader later doubled down, telling his cabinet that Israel is “the nation state not of all its citizens, but only of the Jewish people”.

Netanyahu’s comments are the latest grim episode in an election season that will see Israelis going to the polls on 9 April. Just last month, the prime minister helped engineer an election merger that could see far-right party Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Power) enter the Knesset.

That latter piece of realpolitik in particular prompted outrage from a number of Israeli politicians, analysts and even US-based groups better known for their Israel advocacy. According to the critics, Netanyahu’s boosting of the far-right and indulging of racist rhetoric endangers Israeli democracy.

Netanyahu is desperate, in the face of an electoral challenge from former military chiefs of staff as well as the looming indictments for corruption allegations. But recent developments are not just about motivating a right-wing base – the problem goes much deeper than an embattled demagogue.Netanyahu’s election manoeuvres offer an opportunity to shine a spotlight on an uncomfortable truth: namely that only under the most superficial definition can Israel be considered a democracy.

Consider the following:

Millions of Palestinians are subjected to a military regime which, for 52 years, has facilitated the establishment of illegal settlements. Settlers are Israeli citizens, and vote. The Palestinians they live among – whose land the settlers inhabit and colonise – are not.

The April elections will lead to the formation of Israel’s 35th government. Israel’s military occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza Strip began during Israel’s 13th government.

Those Palestinians who do have Israeli citizenship, meanwhile, are very much second-class citizens – as Netanyahu has been at pains to emphasize.

Yes, the Jewish Nation-State law passed last year is significant in that regard, defining Israel as “the national home of the Jewish people”, and asserting that “the right to exercise national self-determination in the state of Israel is unique to the Jewish people”.

But the legislation was consistent with de jure and de facto discrimination going back to the very foundation of the state of Israel.As conflict studies scholar Nadim Rouhana wrote in 2010, “there are few honest observers in Israel who dispute that a Jewish state, by definition, privileges one group of citizens over another”.

This is an inequality “expressed in various ways, including in Israel’s Basic Laws and its laws of land control, immigration and resource distribution” – as documented by Palestinian citizens themselves, as well as international NGOs and human rights experts.

Finally – and this is regrettably rarely taken into account – there are millions of Palestinians who, expelled from their homes in the 1948 Nakba and prevented from returning ever since, are denied their rightful citizenship and thus suffrage…

FINISH READING: Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East? Netanyahu’s comments have shattered that illusion | The Independent






 

Posted in DONALD TRUMP, HWH COMMENTARY, POLITICS

‘The Biggest Threat to Our Democracy Is Indifference.’ Barack Obama Kicks off Midterm Campaigning

HWH COMMENT:

Re:“The biggest threat to our democracy is indifference” said by Obama gearing up for campaigning for mid-term elections on his quest to save American democracy.

One thing to be sure about the world today, especially in America, there is no indifference – not from anyone nor any sector.

People from all walks hold strong views about everything.

Protests are more common throughout the land than ever. Social media is lit with power hungry reactionaries, wanting to change your thought process into theirs – again from all walks.

Americans are not standing still – no matter their agendas.

Words used in the past to stir a nation (such as ‘indifference’) are no longer useful.

Obama acts desperate to be president again, like Bill Clinton did. Once you have that power you never want to let it go. So hey, use it in a new, better way, not a way that didn’t work. Nobody is indifferent. Not now.

The biggest threat to democracy is people in authority using fear tactics to tell the populace how to vote. How about we hold those who campaign for an agenda to the same standards we demand of Donald Trump? It looks to me like nobody is playing by their own rules.

Politicians want Trump to solve all the problems they didn’t solve or currently can’t solve. So, they lay all the blame at his doorstep instead of their own. Rather than work with him, to change what they couldn’t or won’t, they attack and resist for the sake of resisting, till they get into office and everybody elected forgets what they promised to do to get that vote. The democrats are playing the same resist and wait till the next elections game that the republicans did.

What’s new and better about that strategy? Nothing. It’s more of the same. That’s why voter turnout is low, and has been for a long time. It’s not because of apathy on the part of the voters, it’s because of slow moving politicians who delay making decisions that will provoke change.

Tactical Abuse is the new strategy to produce that change. Hit them over their heads till they cave to your way is the lazy person’s game plan to change the world. That methodology used to be called the end justifies the means, or ‘whatever it takes’ as long as it gets done is worth the price of life and limb.

Whoa.

Has planet earth been invaded by a silent war organism that strips the brain of all logic and common sense and decency, so it can occupy the minds of humans for the purpose of taking over the planet?

It sure looks, walks and sounds it to me.

Not all democrats are worthy of the office they seek. Not all republicans are worthy of the office they seek. Yet each side pushes all their candidates down your throats till you choke and end up voting for no one.

Everybody knows that no matter who you vote for, not much is going to change, regardless of the party that lands the coveted seats.

Why did Obama promise Israel that he would move the American embassy to Jerusalem? To get the Jew vote he lied.

Source: ‘The Biggest Threat to Our Democracy Is Indifference.’ Barack Obama Kicks off Midterm Campaigning






 

Posted in DONALD TRUMP, HWH COMMENTARY, POLITICS

THE RESISTANCE – a joke or a tragedy

Why is there a resistance movement in the United States? Resistance to what? Donald Trump? Republicans? Anybody who wants to work with Donald Trump, anybody who supports Donald Trump? Resistance to all white people, crackers, the white man, racists? Old white people? All men? All rich white people? How about rich brown or black people? Resistance to them too?

Probably because there are so many people who immigrated to the USA from countries where there was a resistance movement already in play – where they lived either under a dictatorship or in poverty, this whole notion of resistance gained traction. When they immigrated to the United States, they brought their political movements with them – immigrants largely do that – that’s all they know. There was a void in democratic leadership after Hillary Clinton lost the presidential election to Donald Trump, and other democratic leaders were too incapacitated by the loss to fill that void.

Who would believe that the very people who were a part of exporting the USA system of democracy to other nations would be attempting to overthrow the legally and democratically elected leader of the United States? I guess we’ve been overthrowing dictators for so long around the world, that we caught that ‘overthrow the dictator’ bug.

We did it to others – many others – now we’re doing it to ourselves. The world is laughing. Maybe they’ll be crying before long. Destabilize the USA and the world economy collapses. This won’t be a World War III. It will be much worse.

Efforts to derail, undermine, take down a sitting president who was legally elected through the democratic process destabilizes a nation, making that nation vulnerable to corruption and attack from within and from outside its borders.

So you’ll stop the coup attempt if President Trump does what you want him to do? If he gets on board with your personal agenda, throws away all the laws, all the history, all the white culture (whatever that is), start all over and let you (the black and brown people) take charge? And you’ll let him go to some obscure country in South America to live out the remainder of his days?

That’s extortion, blackmail, terrorism and treason.

So this is a take over? A coup. In the United States? See what happens when you bring your ‘resistance to everything’ culture with you to a new country? You turn it into the same country that you ran from.






 

Posted in DONALD TRUMP, HWH COMMENTARY, POLITICS

BIG ON COMPLAINTS SHORT ON SOLUTIONS

‘The majority rules’ doesn’t mean the majority is right. All systems are flawed. Democracy can satisfy fifty-one percent of the people, which leaves forty-nine percent disgruntled. Out of that fifty-one percent, people still may not be satisfied within that group, since the final choice between two candidates often results in choosing the lesser of two unsuitable candidates.

That’s the price of democracy.  A raise of hands. The yeas and nays. How many for? How many against? That’s our system.

Democracy is the best system to date that we as American Missionaries work hard to export to other countries many times at the cost of life, limb and peace of mind. Democracy is the reason many immigrants risk, life, limb and peace of mind to come to America to take part in the democratic way of life, even when the outcome is not always right, and not always in their favor.

We have term limits, which is designed to fix the mistakes we as voters make. Vote them in, we don’t like their performance, vote them out.

Instead of debunking the system that is not always right, develop a better system. It’s easy to complain absent a solution.

The world is big on complaints and short on solutions.

Be big on solutions.

Our best solutions in our minds always end up in destruction mode. We think the destruction method is expedient. We’re loud, violent, won’t let up till the so and so elected official is gone, we get louder and more forceful, all-consuming of our time and energy, inviting others to the fight, then threaten if they don’t join, all the while sure, absolutely sure, that this is the only way, by legal or any other means, to destroy this elected official, make stuff up, make the populace angry as hell, shout over everybody else, put on the best all-out psycho performance to show how crazy you can really get if you don’t have your way and get this person booted out of office, you will literally blow up the planet and everything on it, knowing full well that just before you push the button or pull the switch this person will leave on their own volition and you can claim victory over running somebody out of office, the one you didn’t want, rather than wait the customary amount of time to vote out this elected official and vote in the one everybody supposedly really wants.

Who might that be? Remember Bashar Hafez al-Assad of Syria. A half million people dead, a country in ruin, a global catastrophe and he’s still standing.

Find a better way by working with what you have, until such time you can vote the people you don’t like out, or change the system requiring a larger majority than fifty-one percent, which would satisfy, at least theoretically, a greater number of voters.

America is always split fifty-fifty or thereabouts. If the bar is raised, the people will fall into line with the new requirement. The country will become sixty-one to fifty-nine. That sounds like too much of a dictatorship. Maybe we’ll all get stuck in our little box and nothing will ever get solved. That’s where we are now – stuck in our little box.

Our political system may as well be a flip of the coin with a fifty-fifty, one point over the line wins, way of deciding who rules. We’re always hearing on the news that the country is equally divided. Then change the divide and see what happens. Or not. If we can never reach more than just over the line of fifty percent in agreement or against, then we must accept our fate of always being pretty much equally divided – meaning always at odds with whatever the outcome is.

Perhaps we need to stop treating our politics like a sport, whereby there are two teams with fans on either side cheering for their team to win.

We need to find a way to satisfy more people, and stop being disgruntled just because you relish the devilish role, the feeling of adrenaline pumping blood faster than need be through your over-stretched veins, the power to spew whatever comes out must be right, cause it’s coming from you, mentality that being disgruntled provides you. It’s no fun being satisfied. You like to fight and as long as it isn’t you getting hurt, then you’ll work your mouth off to destroy the target of the day.

Develop another system, find a different way, work on a new solution to an old problem. “If you’re not part of the solution you’re part of the problem” is not a solution. It’s a lazy person’s way of passing the responsibility onto anybody they say it to. You don’t need any more bumper sticker sayings. You need real thinking, problem-solving people.

Raise the bar to sixty-one percent majority across the board. Redefine majority within a political context. That way you won’t always have half the people disgruntled. At least sixty-one percent will be satisfied.

But oh no, the minority wants to rule. Then make a better case for your plan being the plan that works for everyone – and it will become the majority. Just telling people it will work for everyone isn’t enough. Why should anyone believe you?

Too much work. I’d rather roll the dice.

Then you gambled and won, or you gambled and lost.

Don’t cry to me.