Tuesday, January 19, 2010


It must be a tremendous insult to the Haitian people that president Obama appointed George W. Bush along with Bill Clinton to head up relief efforts for Haiti. Although Clinton has a dubious history with Haiti too, Bush is seen as the enemy of Haiti by a great number of people in that country. It was under the Bush administration that the US military was sent to Haiti in the middle of the night to kidnap their elected president, Jean-Bertrand Aristide in 2004. Aristide was put on a US military plane and dropped in the Central African Republic and left there. Aristide had been a very popular president but one the US government didn’t like because of his anti-globalization stand and his insistence that Haiti’s resources and production to be used to better the Haitian people not the multi-national corporations.

Bush also had less than a good record for his administrations response in New Orleans after hurricane Katrina. There, mercenaries from the Blackwater corporation along with National Guard were sent in to keep order as a priority over meeting the needs of the people. The same seems to be happening in Haiti today.

As many are calling for the return of Aristide as a way of unifying the country, the US has sent in the military, supposedly in a humanitarian mission. Other countries did not send their militaries; they sent doctors and disaster recovery experts. The first move the US military did was to take over the airport. As stated in an AP article on January 18, 2010, “Some aid groups and foreign officials have blamed the U.S. military for slowing down aid deliveries, saying the American units that took charge of the small Port-au-Prince airport last week gave priority to U.S. military flights.” In a country where possibly 200,000 have died, where the people are in great need of aid the US is emphasizing security. Is the US afraid that the Haitian government has collapsed and the people might rise up and overthrow the US supported government and perhaps bring back Aristide?

Maybe, with his record in Iraq, Afghanistan and New Orleans, Obama sees Bush as just the right man for the job.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


Yes, the 3D in the movie AVATAR was incredible as was the world created as the backdrop for the story. But mostly, I liked the politics.

Here is the story where the natives win. It is a story where the invasion and occupation of a foreign land for mineral rights and profit is defeated and the destruction of the environment for profit does not succeed as the entire planet rises up to defeat the invaders and destroyers.

We have all heard of the effort of a true genius, James Cameron, who spent year envisioning this movie and waiting for the technology to catch-up with his ideas. But politically, this movie could not have been produced at any other time. It came out just as the Copenhagen talks on climate change were concluding with an agreement by the rich countries to continue to destroy the planet for profit. It came out as the US is escalating the war in Afghanistan with powerful technologies that the native people of Afghanistan can not match. The themes in AVATAR are exactly parallel.

These themes of US aggression and environmental destruction were not coincidental. This was shown by one of the characters referring to the invasion of the planet as “Shock and Awe,” the term used by the Bush administration to describe the US invasion of Iraq.

Part of the genius of Cameron was how he got the viewer on the side of the indigenous people and against the greed and violence of the corporation and the American mercenaries. Though it was not stated, these were clearly Americans, the shots are called by the representative of the corporation that is trying to exploit the minerals on the planet and the soldiers are clearly mercenaries similar to the Blackwater mercenary bands that have been running lawlessly through Iraq and Afghanistan.

So, the movie is a must see for every science fiction fan and everyone trying to save our environment and bring about a peaceful world.