Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Election Day USA

Cuba and the World Watches!!
          Today -- NOVEMBER 8TH, 2016 -- is election day in the United States of America. The money-crazed, almost unending presidential election process in the world's greatest and strongest democracy has not only dragged on-and-on month-after-month but also year-after-year. That, of course, mindlessly punishes Americans as the great political cartoonist Dave Chappatte so aptly illustrates with the above gem. The endless election cycle, unique to America, allows more time for powerful entities -- including the mainstream U. S. media -- to partake in the financial windfalls by raking in ungodly amounts of political ad dollars. The mindless election process in the U. S. also...even more sadly...reflects the deleterious impact of the once sacrosanct Supreme Court, which in 2010, many democracy-lovers believe, pounded a huge nail in democracy's coffin when it ruled that multi-billionaires could make unlimited political donations, essentially allowing 20 or so multi-billionaires to purchase the basic tenets of the U. S. democracy, largely demeaning the voting power of masses of individual, non-rich Americans. That money-crazed effect has been exacerbated by a vast deterioration of the mainstream U. S. media, which has evolved more into powerful propaganda machines instead of the providers of unbiased news coverage. So, go back to the top and re-study Dave Chappatte's brilliant political cartoon that defines the reaction of most Americans helplessly fed-up with their money-crazed political system and the media propaganda machines that, incredibly, merely pretend to be unbiased news gathering sources. The combination of a money-dominated election and a propaganda-based media will end up with an elected President tonight but later it might evolve into violence or even some form of a revolution, which this democracy does not deserve.
         The almost endless money-crazed race to the White House finally ends today and will elect as President of the United States either Hillary Clinton, from the extremely flawed and many-believe corrupt Clinton dynasty, or Donald Trump, the extremely flawed and totally unqualified billionaire businessman. Never before have the two top presidential contenders been so unpopular, a fact that displays to the world the fallibility of a two-party political system in which, this time more than ever before, both candidates are considered to be bought-and-paid-for, although less so for Trump, which is a big reason he will lose.
      A two-party political system that produces two extremely UNPOPULAR presidential candidates is surely in dire need of a process that gives American voters more than the choice of the lesser of two evils.
       Graphics such as this -- depicting Clinton and Trump as "the least popular candidates of all time." -- are surely not ringing endorsements for the U. S. democracy, which for over two centuries was surely the greatest form of government ever devised but now one that is becoming fragile and very vulnerable.
           And now, With all that being said, later tonight the Republican Donald Trump will project a glum, downtrodden countenance while the Democrat Hillary Clinton will exude a broad and all-encompassing smile. Trump, the unqualified businessman, will surprise many people with how many votes he actually gets because he at least represents change. But the deeply flawed Clinton will easily stroll the electoral path to a decisive victory. As the 2000 election revealed when Al Gore got more popular votes but George W. Bush won with the most electoral votes, the U. S. democracy -- the world's greatest -- is far from perfect, a fact made indelible in the eyes of many by a two-party bought-and-paid-for system and a mainstream media that has turned into propaganda machines instead of unbiased news gathering organizations.
      When all is said and done sometime tonight, Hillary Clinton will be celebrating her victory as the newly elected President of the United States, instantaneously making her the most powerful person in the world, even more omnipotent than the lame-duck, out-going, two-term President, Mr. Obama, that she will replace.
      And so, later tonight Hillary Clinton will make history as the first female President of the United States. It is, of course, time that the U. S. democracy followed democracies like England, Australia, South Korea, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, etc., etc., in electing a female President. Women tend to be less corrupt, more decent and less war-mongering than males. Yet, the first U. S. female President, Mrs. Clinton, will take over the White House with unique baggage relating to the Clinton dynasty's well-earned reputation for corruption -- dating back to the Whitewater and Rose Law Firm scandals as the political kingpins, Hillary and Governor Bill, in Arkansas decades ago and continuing right up to the present moment, after two White House terms, with unending controversies related to the Clinton Foundation's alleged and notorious solicitations of untold millions of pay-for-play dollars from Wall Street and even foreign billionaires. Thus, more Clinton history beginning in the White House on January 20th, 2017 might well be made in fighting off continuous corruption charges fueled by endless streams of more revelations.
       As the newly elected U. S. President later tonight, Hillary Clinton's euphoria may well be short-lived. That is not wishful or hopeful thinking. For the sake of America and democracy, I wish her well. I was a lifelong Republican until the Bush dynasty's alliance with the Batistianos and Mafiosi related to Cuba ended my Republicanism for good. Yet, I believe what will now be a third term in the White House for the Clinton dynasty may be as devastating for the U. S. democracy as the three terms of the Bush dynasty, with more to come if Jeb can resurrect his political career or if his dangerously ambitious son George P. down in Texas keeps lassoing tons of political dollars from right-wing billionaires who now have, thanks to a Supreme Court ruling and a biased media, clearance to purchase even the cherished U. S. presidency. Yet, like millions of other democracy-loving Americans, I was left during this elongated presidential cycle to support the lesser of what I believe to be two evils -- Mrs. Clinton over Mr. Trump. Mrs. Clinton will at least endeavor to continue the sane, brave, and decent overtures President Obama has made in regards to Cuba. Even as the 191-to-0 vote in the United Nations revealed that NO NATION IN THE ENTIRE WORLD, even including the United States itself, supported the vile, decades-old American Cuban policy, Trump and his running mate Mike Pence traipsed to Little Havana in Miami to assure a handful of still-revengeful anti-Castro Cuban-Americans that, once in the White House, they would "turn back" all of Obama's positive Cuban overtures and "return" Cuba to the State Department's "Sponsors of Terrorism" list, supposedly only to appease a few revengeful zealots fully anxious to hurt millions of innocent Cubans to avenge their losses to the Cuban Revolution. Rogues like Trump and Pence, flagrantly vowing to ignore the unanimity of world opinion not to mention the opinions of most Americans and most Cuban-Americans, do not deserve to be near the White House. My hope, as a democracy-loving American, is that President Hillary Clinton will surprise us all and end up proving she indeed deserves to the first female President of the United States.
 And speaking of Cuba
         I like this photo taken by Alberto N. Jones and used courtesy of Havana Times.org. It shows a happy Cuban lady walking down the main, sparsely traveled highway running down the heart of Playa Guardalavaca in Banes, Holguin Province, Cuba. When I was in Cuba, I remember this street and other happy Cubans who don't have many expensive material things but seem to make the most of being happy, carefree and resilient. The Revolution hasn't made them wealthy, certainly not with the half-century-old U. S. embargo, but my observances on the island educated me to the values of almost crime-free and drug-free lifestyles as well as a population blessed with totally free essentials such as health care and college educations along with free food and shelter if needed. So, this happy, friendly Cuban resonates with me.
And by the way
       Yesterday -- Nov. 7, 2016 -- Janet Reno died in Miami at age 78. She was the first female Attorney General of the United States, serving in that capacity from 1993 till 2001 for President Bill Clinton. In 1994 she made a controversial decision to end a congressional investigation into the Clinton Whitewater Scandal dating back to Clinton's two terms as Governor of Arkansas.
       But Janet Reno is most remembered for this iconic photo that shows a federal officer, under Reno's orders, rescuing 6-year-old Cuban Elian Gonzalez from Miami and Fort Lauderdale anti-Castro zealots and Cuban-American politicians. Elian was returned to his father and they flew to Cuba in April of 2000.
        When the 6-year-old Elian Gonzalez returned to Cuba, it was a major victory for the island's revolutionary icon Fidel Castro.
         Elian, shown here on the right with one of his close friends, grew up happy, well educated and a Castro disciple in Cuba.
      Elian and his father in Cuba. Elian's mother drowned in the Florida Straits after putting the 6-year-old Elian on an inner- tube, which saved him till he was rescued near shore by fishermen.
Elian with his fiancee Ilianet Escano.

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