Archive for June, 2010

Ari-el or Yisrāzona ..?

Thursday, June 3rd, 2010


Although the advisability of my plan for the resolution of strife in the Middle East is not certain and it may not meet with the approbation of all parties involved…it has been brewing for almost 30 years…and the current situation vis-à-vis the blockade of the Gaza Strip, along with the elevation of Hamas to government status in part of the Palestinian Territory and then, what with the re-installation of the ultra-conservative Likud leader, Benjamin Netanyahu as Prime Minister of Yisrael…all of these factors combined have forced me to make known publicly (and admittedly, perhaps, prematurely, and, not to mention…idiotically) the general framework for my brilliant scenario for peace in the Promised Land.

* The Virtues of Medīnat Yisrā’el (the State of Israel):

A highly organized and technologically advanced society with a wealth of  human resources in the Arts, Medicine and Science…proven history of expertise at internal security and border control…a fascinating people with a sense of history and tradition along with a willingness to innovate in countless fields of human endeavor or… wait a minute…listen to a few seconds of Mark Twain’s “Essay…Concerning the Jewish People” from Harper’s Magazine, September 1899 “…If statistics are right, the Jews constitute but one percent of the human race. It suggests a nebulous dim puff of stardust lost in the blaze of the Milky way. properly, the Jew ought hardly to be heard of, but he is heard of, has always been heard of. He is as prominent on the planet as any other people, and his commercial importance is extravagantly out of proportion to the smallness of his bulk. His contributions to the world’s list of great names in literature, science, art, music, finance, medicine, and abstruse learning are also away out of proportion to the weakness of his numbers. He has made a marvelous fight in this world, in all the ages; and had done it with his hands tied behind him. He could be vain of himself, and be excused for it…” Well put, Sam, after that, most people would say,“…now, they sound like desirable neighbors…”

Downside: In order to satisfy the (altogether reasonable) desire of the Jewish people to find a permanent place to live in peace and prosperity after the various disasters and hardships visited upon them during the Diaspora…they decided to return, en masse, to the biblical “Promised Land” and as a result of this ill-advised attempt to go home (you can’t go home again), they have found themselves living in the middle of a hornet’s nest, surrounded on all sides by a people, who, although they share the same Semitic blood, (the history of enmity between brothers is always the bloodiest, isn’t it..? Cain and Abel…The English and Germans in two World Wars, the North and South, Athens and Sparta, the good citizens of Belfast, etc…etc…etc…etc…etc….et cetera..) despise them and are determined to never, never, ever, ever let them live in peace.

* The Virtues of the State of Arizona:

An unbelievably beautiful desert state with a significant Native American population and the fastest growing major metropolis (Phoenix/Scottsdale) in the United States…sunshine year ‘round…unlimited solar energy…pockets of highly progressive individuals help foster a good vibe in the state as a whole…and also, it has a population almost identical to Israel, but about 13 times the land.

Downside: bunch of yuppie spas (could easily be converted into National Park Spas offered to all at a reasonable rate…[like the cabins on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon]) and a**hole conservatives led by ex Party-Fly-Boy, jock douchebag John McCain…pockets of right wing,scumbags whose policies are threatening to give Arizona a bad name and dismember that “Good Vibe” by enforcing bizarrely backward-thinking border laws and encouraging racist attitudes, instead of just securing the border and offering amnesty to our hard-working decent Mexican visitor/friends and imprisoning Mexican (and American) coyotes and violent heavy-drug runners (if we’d just get off the stick and legalize pot.. it’d make it a lot easier to separate the wheat from the chaff, dealer-wise…meth and crack are exceedingly anti-social…pot is not..!) and anyone guilty of violent crime.

* The Virtues of  Ari-el (or Yisrāzona):

It becomes the hands down grooviest, most progressive and most prosperous state in the union, divided into three new “Super-Counties”…the Northeast is Navaho County which voluntarily ditches the sobriquet “reservation” and includes parts of Monument Valley and the Canyon de Chelly (and with the help, ingenuity, generosity and sensitivity of the good people in the county next door, working together with their new neighbors, the Navaho people transform their land from a depressed poverty-stricken outpost of a once proud people into a thriving Native American civilization once again, with beautiful farms and villages…a chicken in every pot and a sweat lodge for every family, as well as, hospitals and schools, including a Native American Dineh University (University of “The People”) to rival any in the world….in the Southwest is Amerizona County which includes Tucson, Phoenix/Scottsdale, Yuma and Lake Havasu City, all of which thrive in a state that becomes the global showcase for new technology, thanks to the arrival of about 6 million, happenin’ Israelis (5,660,700 Jewish citizens as of December 2009 and a number of Arab family members and others who insist on moving with their friends..…and in the center, from the Northwest to the Southeast, stretching in a more or less Israel-shaped (but with five times the area) parcel is Nuevo Israel County… which includes the Grand Canyon, the Painted Desert, Flagstaff becomes the New Jerusalem, with settlements all along the Mexican Border (from below Tucson East to New Mexico) that help to secure the border, while at the same time offering a welcoming presence to all our neighbors South of the Border…the perceived difficulty of our relationship with Mexico will seem child’s play for a people who have dealt with the exigencies of life in the Middle East…Instead of being isolated, the Jewish population of Ari-el/Yisrāzona will have Las Vegas on the North (a little town thrown together by a jewish kid from Brooklyn) and on the west by Southern California which includes an enclave called Hollywood, where a bunch of Jewish kids from back east started one of the most affluent and influential industries in the world… modern ShowBiz..!  The center of the global Television and Film industry with a significant Jewish population is right next door…!!! C’mon…C’mon….C’mon’s a complete no-brainer..!!!  All that’s left is for the Congress to pass a little immigration legislation, for the people of Arizona to understand the benefits, and for the President of the United States, Barack Hussein Obama, to extend the invitation, on behalf of a grateful nation…ending the whole Arab-Israeli nightmare would be such a feather in our cap… sure, there will be some orthodox nut-cases (from here and there) who will despise the idea and shout, “Blasphemy” but, we’ll move the Wailing Wall and The Temple Mount, in fact, the entire HaRova HaYehudi, to Sedona and all will be well… Mazel tov…!!!

Downside: In spite of having been the home of Stewart and Mo Udall, two of my favorite politicians from the 60’s (albeit, scions of a huge, strange Mormon dynasty that politicked in four western states over the years)…Arizona is more well known for Barry Goldwater, who, as a proto-libertarian had many ideas I could get behind but, the bad thing is, his, by and large, conservative stance, helped move the republican party towards the logical terminus of Reagan/Bush where our social policy was promptly given over to religious fanatics and their collective economic policy could only be called, “How to Bow before Mammon” Then there is John McCain, who because he was pretty funny for an old guy and seemed to be something of a mav…er…iconoclast…was early on, a favorite on my preferred talk show/faux news circuit boys… Jon and Stephen and Bill all fawned over John, until he ran in earnest and sold out completely and you realized that his swagger and “coolness” was really just, “can’t grow up bad-boy-fighter-pilot-jock-spoiled-frat-boy war hero ‘cause he lost a couple of multi-million-dollar aircraft and spent time as a prisoner of war in a war we (and he) should never have touched with a ten-foot pole.” And then, he showed his true colors by, disrespecting the American flag and himself and Arizonans and all of us by suggesting that an awful, ignorant redneck from a small town in Alaska should be his running mate and therefore a heartbeat away from the presidency of these United States…Holy sh*t…John, were you out of your f**king mind…??!!?? Amazing…anyway, he and his supporters will no longer be the majority in Ari-el/Yisrāzona …I believe when security is no longer an issue the allure of Netanyahu and the Likud Party will lose its appeal and the big hearted, liberal mentality of the majority of the jewish people will reign supreme in the desert.

N.B. please allow me to make it perfectly clear (to anyone who gives a damn) that my plan is anything but flippant…it is a desperate response to a desperate situation that only appears to become more and more desperate with each passing year….please, Israel, please…come to our desert…!!!

It’s Wednesday and the rant is due.

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010


So you have (prepare for oxymoron) all the Right Wing Think Tank guys spurting nonsense about how you mustn’t tax the rich, because if you take money away from the geniuses who occupy the realm of the Uber Rich you will cripple the creative drive of mankind…well, my friends, its such a load of crap (read: collection of notions based on a specious premise) that the world’s progress depends on keeping the well-to-do..(well-to-do), that only over-paid PR flaks could actually (even pretend to) believe it…creative genius appears in every socio-economic group and hard workers are more likely to sport cloth caps than bejeweled tiaras…give money to lower middle class, or even poor, women if you want to see real productivity (check the stats on the micro-banks flourishing around the globe) You want to raise the tax base…? Give every unemployed American a job working on (and in) schools and hospitals and building and running a new “off the grid” America…taxes galore..! Then, take the trillion dollars spent every ten years or so, on the various corporate-sponsored Greed Wars, away from Halliburton (and all the other non-tax paying corporations that comprise Grandpa DDE’s Military –Industrial Complex) and the Bush family (and Saudi friends)… and use it to completely revamp this beautiful country of ours…And if you want to find the money to provide health care and a good education for every American and fix the infrastructure and move the world away from its dependence on fossil fuel and fully re-fund social security and do all the things that we as the wealthiest country in the world are capable of doing…well okay then…let’s get back to a 70% marginal tax rate for all people with an income of over $500,000 a year and you know what…??? the rich will still be rich..!!! (that’s how rich the One Percent have become since Reagan threw all caution to the wind in the 80’s and removed any obstacles to an upper class that could be completely unrestrained by any sort of moral (or legal) code whatsoever)…they’ll still have many houses and pools and tennis courts and country clubs and boats and cars and planes and servants and caviar and champagne and no shortage of foie gras and platinum Rolexes and trophy wives and super-duper extra special boutique/spa health care …if they paid 70% of their annual income, they will still have enough money to persue their creative impulses and fly Emirates first class cabins to Dubai for an indoor, summer skiing weekend for $17,000 round trip per person from JFK and they’ll still be able to spring for the $10,890 a night suite at the Burj Al Arab….they’ll have all of that and they will live in a secure America filled with educated, healthy citizens and the lowest crime rate around and all they have to do to is to stop paying politicians to fuck the little guy (and to kiss their asses) and put a significant percentage of their gain (ill gotten or otherwise) to work turning this country of ours into a workable prototype of heaven on earth and then we need to make it our business to export our ecstatic lifestyle to anyone who wants to get off the greed wagon and join our brotherhood, our sisterhood…. our family of Man.