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Comments made by Greg Duch

My Revolutionary Friends In Egypt

Tom: It is so hard to be optimistic about any Middle Eastern nation. The US is much more competent in hekping others to overthrow, oust, knock off regimes, than it is at building democratic regimes to repace those overthrown.
SEE: VietNam, Laos, Cambodia, Iran in 1952 AND 1979, Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Kuwait. I too wish the Egytian nation well. It is an ancient nation and civilization. Unfortunately, Western-style democracy has not been a part of any period of it four millenia of existence. In this repect, Egypt is too similar to the case of Iran, when we nudged the Shah from power. The radicals did not establish an Islamic Republic immediately. The U.S. watched painfully from the sidelines-helpless, while "moderates" struggled with the radicals who found their savior in Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Are we merely witnessing a similar calm before the storm in Egypt, just as we saw in Iran. Khomeini, even turned on those who served as his mignons in government; and they turned on him. Remember Sadegh Ghotzbadei? He was the Foreign Minister of Iran under Ayatollah K. He also was a regular on Nightline with Ted Koppfel during the hostage crisis of 1978-1980. Well poor Sadegh lost favor with Khomeini. Khomeni wanted Sadegh's head for ALLEGED treason. AND HE GOT IT!

March 23, 2011 at 7:28 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Uprising In Libya Latest Example Of Changing Arab World

The "Middle East" is aptly named. The Middle East has been right in the MIDDLE of the of global politics, wars, invasions for several millenia. The Middle East was the birthplace of THREE GREAT RELIGIONS. The Middle East has been the intersection of Asia, Africa, and the "West"-Europe. It seemingly has never known an extended period of peace, prosperity and tolerance even during the PAX ROMANA TWO THOUSAND YEARS AGO. ---WILL IT EVER KNOW PEACE?

March 23, 2011 at 7:08 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Rants and Raves: Elizabeth Taylor


March 23, 2011 at 6:55 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Rants and Raves: Elizabeth Taylor

Liz Taylor- personified class, glamour, compassion, and of course, first-rate talent. Her outstandingly first-class performance in "Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf" is, for me, unambiguous testimony to her greatness, and depth and power as an actress for all time. What a life and what a talent!- Greg

March 23, 2011 at 6:45 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Does It Pay To Believe?

I AM NOT RESPONDING TO ANY PARTICULAR POST. i NOTICE THAT MANY POSTS HAVE A "DEFENSIVE" QUALITY TO THEM. That is to the effect: " I believe what I believe because of my good judgment and moral rectitude (atheists, I believe, CAN BE MORALLY erect too)." Those opinions contrary to mine are just dumb or not clearly thought out." You know,--this life on earth, which none of us chose would REALLY BE BORING if we had all of the answers right now. If we had all of the answers, what would be the point of this existence??? Humans love suspense. How many times does a friend describe FOR US the plot of a novel or movie, when we interrupt them, AND ORDER THEM--"DON'T TELL ME HOW THE MOVIE -OR NOVEL ENDS." The generating power behind existence (MANY CALL GOD, MANY DO NOT.) did us a favor by maintaining mystery and lots of questions unanswered about WHY WE ARE, WHO WE ARE, WHERE WE ARE GOING; OR NOT GOING AFTER DEATH. If a person had foreknowledge that he/she was headed for eternal bliss in heaven; why waste time here on earth?? If a person knew for certain that human existence in its totality ends at death, beyond any doubt, I believe that could create for such a person an existential vacuum, strippping this life of the gift of the unknown,as well.
So for the present moment on this earth, perhaps we can agree, that at the very least, and in the words of Groucho Marx--"COGITO ERGO SUM".
TThat is a reason for joy in itself.

March 22, 2011 at 3:27 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Is San Diego Prepared For Nuclear Crisis?

It is simply impossible to prepare for every possible disaster which may befall San Diego County at some point in the future. There are simply neither the time, nor the resources to be fail-safe in light of the assortment of disasters which potentially threaten this community. However, we do have an excellent model of massive community perseverance, attention, and concentration, in search of a resolution to an imminent and looming local crisis, which has threatened us for sixteen years. Since 1995, San Diego, including government, the media, and the public have been absolutely unrelenting in attention paid and efforts made to prevent that worst of all preventable local nightmares,---THE CHARGERS MOVING FROM SAN DIEGO TO L.A.!!!

March 19, 2011 at 2:14 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Is San Diego Prepared For Nuclear Crisis?

It would be wise to focus public attention and preparedness efforts for a large-magnitude earthquake and ensuing tsunami in San Diego County. Certainly, it also makes sense to educate the public about potential risks from a nuclear accident; whether precipitated by an earthquake,-or otherwise caused. Of course, we need to maintain a level of preparedness in the face of future catastrophic wildfires;- as well as the opposite natural disaster of massive flooding due to a particularly heavy rainfall season. Living here in a desert environment, we cannot neglect measures necessary in the event of long-term drought; and severe water shortage. We can take comfort? in the realization that we in San Diego County, have competent leadership which is every bit as prepared as the folks at FEMA in Washington, regardless of the type of emergency which may befall us here in San Diego County.

March 19, 2011 at 12:34 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

How Open Is Government In San Diego?

This year, the five supervisor's fiefdoms (districts) are to have their lines redrawn. In the past, the Fab Five Supes have conferred among themselves and sliced up the county in ways which seemed most prudent to them ( for re-election purposes). This year there is a chance for public input into the process of slicing and dicing the county's supervisorial districts.
"SAN DIEGO–The County’s Redistricting Advisory Committee last Tuesday approved a schedule of public meetings, including evening meetings in each of the County’s five supervisorial districts in April and May. These meetings are an opportunity for the public to participate in the County’s redistricting process.
Video of all Redistricting Advisory Committee meetings will be posted on this website. The public can now view past meetings there, including Tuesday’s. Residents can also watch future meetings live on the website via streaming video. (Note: Only meetings held at the County Administration Center, but not those held in the supervisorial districts, will stream live).
The redistricting website is designed to be a one-stop resource for members of the public interested in the County’s 2011 redistricting process." (courtesy of the source below)
I realize that such activity is so mundane. The THE FAB FIVE supes are counting on the public and media to remain their quiescent, apathetic, uninvolved selves once more.This way they can cut up the county without being bothered by those over whom they reign. Let me end with the end of the definition of an oligarchy from the
"Usually the way it works is that there is a group of people who are in charge, somehow. Sometimes they may be elected, and sometimes they are born into their position, and at other times you might have to have a certain amount of money or land in order to be in the council. Then this group of people meets every so often - every week or every month - to decide important questions, and to appoint somebody to deal with things. Like they might decide that it should be illegal to steal, and then they would appoint one of the nobles to be a judge, and decide if people were guilty of stealing, and decide what to do with them if they were." Yep, that describes San Diego's County Bored of Supervisors to a fault.-GD

March 17, 2011 at 6:53 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

How Open Is Government In San Diego?

How to define the Bored of Supervisors? How about oligarchy? Here's the definition of oligarchy from the web site " History for Kids".
Oligarchy means the rule of the few, and those few are generally the people who are richer and more powerful than the others, what you might call the aristocrats or the nobles. These are not always men: just as monarchies have both kings and queens, women sometimes appear in councils of aristocrats, and even when they are not members, they are often there telling their husbands or their sons what to do. So oligarchies are generally bad for the poor, but they are pretty good for women, at least for rich women from powerful families. Boy that sounds right on target.

March 17, 2011 at 4:52 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

How Open Is Government In San Diego?

I have never understood how the local media and the public have given an apparent carte blanche to the Board of Supervisors to govern a county of over three million people in near total obscurity; without oversight nor checks and balances!!! Five individuals rule. Three votes out of five is a majority. The same five supervisors have been in office since the mid-1990's. Each time each of the supes run (stroll) for re-election, they are either unopposed or have half-breathing opposition. What a cozy job for life! The FIVE SUPES are the LEGISLATIVE, EXECUTIVE, AND, AT TIMES, JUDICIAL officials for three million plus San Diegans. That's a lot of power concentrated in just five time-worn pairs of hands.It's past time for democracy to come to San Diego's County government. Horn, Cox, Roberts, Jacobs, Slater have occupied their chairs for long enough. Time for a new generation of diverse viewpoints to gain a degree of input into county government.

March 16, 2011 at 7:52 p.m. ( | suggest removal )