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April 21, 2007

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A major record label executive apologizes for Digital Rights Management schemes of the past and promises to release music in an open standard. Wait, it's actually happening with Steve Jobs and Apple!

Universal healthcare is a big one. I read yesterday that 18,000 people a year die in the U.S. because of inadequate healthcare. That includes delayed doctor visits and important diagnostic tests. By the time they are seen by a doctor it's too late to cure the problem. Let's see flags at half mast for these victims.

Hi Leila A,

I came over from Pierre's site to leave my two bits.

I wish that every Congressperson who supports NCLB, including my own, Lynn Woolsey, will wake up tomorrow morning with a realization that this law is actually working against its intention to keep our workforce competitive globally, and our electorate informed and involved to the extent necessary to keep our democracy functionally strong.

Then, I wish that all of these ex-supporters of NCLB will organize a national discussion with the goal of developing a truly outstanding national education policy, a policy intended to create public school environments all across the country that support the critical thinking skills and creativity that our children will need if they are to flourish in a global economy and tackle the internationally challenging environment we are leaving them with.

I truly believe that this can happen, if we reach a collective realization about the current NCLB public school climate.

Thanks for the opportunity to dream, instead of to gripe.

Welcome, Linda, and thank you for posting. I'm with you on No Child Left Behind - I have two sons in the public schools.

And thanks to Alison, as well.

Oh yes, M. Maloof, I didn't mean to leave you out! So glad you dropped by...and thanks for your comment.

"Then Israel realizes that they have to do better, and they make one state and give the vote to everybody within the borders of Israel/Palestine."

Sigh, so much for Laila being a "dove." She still can't accept Israel as a fact.

Well let's add to the wish list...

1) Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, and the rest of the Arab League immediately normalize relations with Israel. They issue a joint statement announcing that it is inappropriate to withhold recognition pending the resolution of the Israel-Palestine dispute, and that they had no right for sixty years to take the racist position that they did to their neighbor. They acknowledge that the harms inflicted on the Palestinians were primarily the result of the rejectionism and political posturing. Cultural and economic ties grow between Israel and the Arab world, and the Arab nations become a bona-fide broker for peace.

2) The Palestinians and Syrians acknowledge that they will actually have to negotiate and compromise to reach a reasonable peace. They will no longer misinterpret international law so that they expect to receive all land that Jordan, Egypt, and Syria lost when they attempted to annihilate their neighbor Israel. The Palestinians acknowledge that the descendants of Arabs displaced in the 1948 war do not have a right to return to Israel. They acknowledge that Israel has a reasonable claim to some of the lands in the West Bank and Golan, and will no longer take a maximalist position misleadingly couched as "international law."

3) In a blow for equality, UNRWA requests that it's affairs be wound up. All refugees under UNRWA are immediately placed under the jurisdiction of UNHCR, who engages in attempts to repatriate and resettle them. Arab nations cease using the descendants of displaced persons as political pawns and allow them the right to work and vote in their countries. This could be mooted, of course, if #s 1 and 2 first occur.

In response to Joshua:
Quote taken from God’s Politics.

“From where do I get my hope? From the people of this place, and those Israeli/Palestinian peace activists who believe passionately that given justice and equality for all its citizens, peace and human security is possible in this holy land. I take hope, too, from the courage of the young Israeli reservists who, following their conscience, have refused military duty in the territories. … I have watched, too, those in the resistance movements who believe justice will only come through violence, and in their frustration, pain, and anger have turned to armed resistance, suicide bombs. Suicide bombs tragically take the life of those who use them, and have taken the lives of many Israeli people, and others, and such actions can never be justified. I would therefore like to appeal to those who use such violence, (including those who use the threat of violence by calling for the destruction of Israel) to abandon these immoral and illegal methods, and use nonviolent language and means of working for justice and freedom.”

- Mairead Corrigan Maguire, who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1976 for her work as co-founder of the Community of Peace People in Northern Ireland, speaking to a nonviolence conference in the West Bank. Later that same day, during a nonviolent protest against Israel’s separation barrier, she was shot in the leg with a rubber-coated steel bullet by Israeli soldiers. (Source: God’s Politics blog)

As an American daughter of two revolutions, 1776 and the 1960s civil rights movement, I believe in certain inalienable rights of ALL human beings, not just those born on American soil:

One person, one vote.

All persons born in a country deserve citizenship and the vote in that country.

Those of you who have a problem with universal sufferage, have a problem with certain principles I hold as fundamental to a just government of the people.

Two states or one state in Israel/Palestine, it's not really my decision to make. I want to see peace and justice in that place.

One person, one vote.

Public funding of all political campaigns, starting with those for national office. It would a) level the playing field so more diverse candidates could step forward; b) I believe, pay for itself, once decisions (especially those for the contracting of goods and services) were made on merit and not on which company gave which amount to a candidate or incumbent; c) decrease the amounts spent on political campaigns generally since the public would be footing the bill; d) attract a different type of candidate.

Office holders would be more accountable to the general public rather than rich contributors.

I have no problem with universal suffrage. We just have to define the relevant political body.

One could just as easily say that West Bankees should be confederated into Jordan. Give everyone one person, one vote. Same with Egypt and Gaza.

The only people who still cling to that are considered "hard line Likudniks" or the like. So why is calling for a one state solution between the West Bank and it's western neighbors progressive, while calling for the same solution between the West Bank and its Eastern neighbors reactionary?

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