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Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Frankfurt am Main
Home country: Germany
Current location: Tacoma, Washington
Member since: Sat Jul 18, 2009, 11:55 AM
Number of posts: 22,593

About Me

Ran for US Congress in 1990 from the left. Chairperson of 1989 city advisory initiative calling for 10% reduction in military spending to be divided among deficit reduction and mass transit and social services. Being a miliary town nobody thought we'd get on the balllot let alone win with 64% of the vote. Former chair of peace and justice project for a UMC congregation in Tacoma, Washington.

Journal Archives

WAR IS PERSONAL: Why I am against attacking Syria:

It is all well and good to watch sanitized pictures of war being perpetuated upon a people in a distant land. I remember as a child Vietnam coming home to me in black and white as I ate dinner in my apartment in Frankfurt, Germany. But I also remember I took it more serious than my counterparts because for me, war is personal. I want to tell you a bit of my story:

My mom lived as a child in downtown Frankfurt, Germany a major transportation hub of the Third Reich. Because Hitler felt that the children were the future of the Reich he decreed that the children need to be evacuated from the major cities. Because there was no transportation for them, my mom walked, and walked and walked. This was in the winter of 1943 at the age of ten years old. Because of walking through the Bavarians, through the ice and snow, she got frostbite and as a result when she was pregnant with me, the hormones raging in her changing body turned that into gangrene and she had to have her leg amputated in order to save the life of her baby (Me). My whole life I watched my mom struggle with walking, she had to constantly watch her weight, she wound up becoming a poor eater and died of a stroke at 39 years of age.

I was born I that German hospital 12 years after the war ended and it wasn't all that sanitary because of it. Because of that, I contracted a case of encephalitis. That left me with adhd in a time when it wasn't diagnosed, it left me equilibrium problems and balance. For both my mom and her leg issues and my adhd and not being to tie my shoes til I was a teenager, not being to ride a bike til I was ten and other things, I was mercilessly teased.

My dad: was a young teenager, volunteered for World War II made it out of there alive, because he had no high school ed the Army became his career...He was sent to Korea and then at the end of his career as an advisor in Vietnam. He was shot in early January 1961 by a Viet Cong sniper. I remember being awakened from my pre Christmas dreams a week before Christmas when I was 7 to see fireman working on dad but to no avail, he succumbed to the injuries he received in Vietnam at the age of 38 and on a snowy day 3 days before Christmas, I listened at grave site to the playing of taps and cringed at the rifle volleys honoring him. So for my early life I struggled with damaged wounded parents, and then with no parents and have grown up as an old soul. And yes, this will happen to the children of Syria, will happen and has happened to the future of Iraq, Iran and all those war torn lands. So once again for hundreds, thousands, millions: WAR IS PERESONAL!!!!

And folks, my tale of woe in miniscule to those of other lands and other peoples...I have met children of war and listened to their life narratives and what it has done to them, It has ruined many lives, it has sapped the potential of many others. And for what?

Power? Oil? Position? Revenge? Diversion?

And we have made more than our fair share of mistakes beating the drums of war....Havanna, Tonkin, Bagdhad and so many others. And in the public realm for me...we have wasted our potential as a nation...with war dollars we could have relieved food insecurity, boosted post secondary education, implemented a national health care system, mass transportation...but instead it has turned us into a mean, cynical nation...

so sorry for the rant..but for me WAR IS PERSONAL and I will never be for it! Thank you for letting me vent!

Just curious: Worst president ever

I was at a dinner last night and this guy goes spouting how he thought Carter was the worst president ever (being weak, energy crisis, inflation etc) I said Reagan (fostering a culture of selfishness and tearing down safety nets) what's your opinion? These were the ones I heard....and if you care why?

If you're against going to war with Syria

check in here..


I never do this, but just now watching the singing of the

Star Spangled Banner, I broke into tears. There standing at the Lincoln Memorial were President's Obama, Clinton and Carter, that great civil rights advocate Rep. John Lewis, Carolyn Kennedy and for some reason all the history both personally politically for me, and corporately as a US body flashed before my eyes. I remember Vietnam protests, the assassinations of the Kennedy's, Watergate, El Salvador, Iraq, Afghanistan etc. I remember making my citizenship and running for congress and there embodied much of that history standing at the Lincoln Memorial.

As we spend the day commemorating Dr. King's Speech let also remember the others who gave their

lives for civil rights....please add to my list!

Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King
Senator Robert Kennedy
Medger Evers
Chaney, Schwerner and Goodman
Malcom X
Those killed in the Greensboro KKK massacre
Those killed at the Edmund Pettus Bridge

I dimly remember 50 years ago today!!!

I was a six year old in Frankfurt, Germany and living in a high rise apartment complex in the middle of the downtown core of this large urban city. Each floor had two TV's. We were living on the 14th floor and I remember that the German TV station was broadcasting Rev. King's speech. My parents made a point of keeping me up to watch it. I was excited because it was break from the usual and I got to stay up later than normal. But I also remember the seriousness of the adults there, specially of the few US expatriots living in the complex. Little did I realize how historic that moment would be.

Now 50 years later in many ways, I feel that racism is worse. Back then it was blatant and could be directly combated. Now it's couched in euphemism's and polite terms. In many ways that is more insidious than what was going on then. Using phrases such a voting fraud, birther talk, welfare queen etc etc is the same talk as using the "N" word, except that the cock roaches that use this kind of language know that direct racist talk is no longer acceptable. Hopefully less than 50 years from this kind of talk will also not be acceptable either.

As Rev. King said: "I have a dream" Hopefully WE ALL HAVE A DREAM!!!

A dream that we live in a just society, a dream that people have the dignity of labor, the right to a reasonable standard of living, that education once again will be valued and prioritized, that the least among us will be lifted up!


To me it started with Reagan. His administration set out a long term agenda to dismantle living wages, and constitutional rights. Some of it was stemmed by Clinton but not much. A prime example other than the air traffic controllers is teachers. For 30 years now we have heard how bad our educational system is and how teachers are over paid. As soon as teachers in most districts started getting paid and TREATED as professionals, the war against them was begun. The same with postal workers and other union folks.

Another facet of this is the fact that we have dumbed down our text books for educating our nations young. Some of that results from buying them from Texas.

Most of it I feel is more insidious than that. Agree or disagree if you like: but I feel that the corporate overlords made us just fat and comfortable enough to not riot and create revolution, but fearful enough to know that we could be destitute in one or two paychecks ourselves.

We've got enough electronics to make life comfortable, quick results offer instant gratification so we to want things fast and that includes our news. We are acclimated to not listen more and 30-60 seconds to a news report, we don't delve into the why and how of events in our lives and while we are not looking: poof, your standard of living and rights are being diminished.

August 29th is a call by our brothers and sisters in the fast food industry to strike for better wages. I would love to see an all out nationwide strike. WE NEED TO WAKE UP!!!


With the news of UPS cutting 15K folks from their health insurance plan, once again it hits me just how backward this nation is when it comes to health care. medicine and medical treatment should NEVER be a for profit endeavor. Once we decide to have our priorities correct in this issue, you will see a great reduction in bankruptcies and destitution. One should never have to choose between health, housing and or food!

If you've seen the movie "The Butler" would you rate it for me?

and if you feel like sharing please tell why. My wife and I saw it yesterday


I was watching the protests in Egypt the other night and it struck me how passionate they were about getting a new government. It seems to me that in the US the TPTB (elected officials and large corporations, Wall Street) have us just where they want us...the vast majority of us have just enough food and shelter to stop us from getting too excited and they also have us in the position that almost all of us are 1-3 paychecks away from disaster. I don't think that at this point this country is capable of meaningful opposition to injustice or oppression. Just my humble opinion.
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