Thursday, August 31, 2006

Looking for a Few Good Men....or Women

Classes start next week, which means between teaching, studying for comps, working on my dissertation proposal and doing research I will be swamped. I'll be lucky to get a post a week.

So, I've decided, I will look for two guest bloggers. The requirements are simple: a post a day from at least one blogger, no Castro or communist propaganda in the posts, a somewhat conservative viewpoint - I stretch as far as center and so can the guest bloggers, and overall consistency with the blog.

Is there anyone among my loyal readers willing to help me out? It will probably be until around Thanksgiving, which is when I'm hoping to take and PASS my comps. Afterwards, I can take back the reins, but the guest bloggers can remain guesting if they so wish.

Any takers? Drop me an email wallstreetcafe-at-gmail-dot-com.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Danger to our South, Part II

Earlier this year, in my very first post as contributor at Babalú, I posted about the threat Venezuela posed to the stability and peace in our region. The topic of that post was the increasing between Chavez and radical Islam groups.

Back then, some people agreed others thought I was paranoid. It's been almost 7 months since that post, and we've seen Chavez pander to the radical Islam groups (and some terrorist groups as well), in his never ending recruitment of anti-American forces. Make no mistake, Chavez is not anti-Bush - that's the veil he hides behind; he is decidedly anti-American. Period.

Well, with newly found support among Arabs harvested by recalling his envoy at Israel, threatening to cut diplomatic ties with Israel, and constant comparing of Israel retaliation on Hezbollah as Nazi actions it seems he is beginning to show his true colors.

Make no mistake folks, Chavez would support any attack on the U.S.A. by any country. And he might even participate himself, after all, his been buying as much weaponry as he can find.

Keep an eye on this, and I hope everyone else is too.

Previous Posts: Latin America - A Sleeping Threat, Hezbolla and Hamas in South America, Iran and Venezuela, The Iranians are Coming, State Sponsored Islam in Cuba, Cuba and Iran - Old Friends

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Rudy 2008

Shocked? You shouldn't be. As Crosspatch over at TownHall said:

I registered for the Republican Party, I didn't register for the "Conservative Party". The truth is that in this country, neither party can win a national election by playing to its base.

The reason becomes clear when you look at the registration numbers of the parties. The Democrats have a couple of points advantage over the Republicans and registration percentages for both parties are in the 30's.

This means that Republicans account for some 33% or so of the voters. In order to win, a party needs to present a candidate that can get at least half the Independent votes and a good number of crossover votes from the other party.

Plain and simple. So, who do you want as your 2008 candidate?

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Katrina, the Government and the Media....and Hurricane Andrew

Update: Wizbang has a great one year later post.

I am of the opinion that everyone failed where Katrina was concerned. Katherine Blanco failed as governor, Ray Nagin failed miserably as Mayor and the federal government failed miserably.

Katrina has to be broken into two stages: pre-hurricane preparations (evacuations, shelters, supplies) and post-hurricane aid (supplies, shelters). The local government on New Orleans and Louisiana were completely incompetent and unprepared for this disaster. I don't know if they didn't get a feel for what was coming, or if they didn't feel threatened until it was impending. That no one realized that New Orleans would be an underwater city the next day is beyond me. Coming from experience (I do have many hurricanes under my belt - both in PR and FL), the best way to save lives is in pre-hurricane preparations.

That people were not evacuated and the mandatory evacuation was not until 24 hours before, that patients were left in hospitals, that elderly were left in nursing homes and hospices, that the population was taken to an impromptu shelter in downtown New Orleans are all unacceptable and irresponsible. Yet the people of New Orleans re-elected that same unacceptable and irresponsible person.

That people were stuck at the SuperDome for more than 10 days with no water, no food, no security and no way out, is also unacceptable and irresponsible - both of the local government and of the federal government for not deploying the National Guard in rafts, helicopters, or whatever was available to either get them out or bring supplies in. That the Red Cross, mismanaged the funds and stole from the victims of Katrina is beyond any human comprehension.

Much has been said that the aid was delayed because these were poor Black victims and the blame on Bush has gotten as far as almost saying that the President intentionally created hurricane Katrina and sent it to New Orleans. Much has also been said about Jeb Bush getting help b/c he was the president's brother.

Well, Florida does have one advantage when we get hurricanes, we don't flood as New Orleans did, so the trucks and the help can drive right in, shelters are in place before the hurricane strikes, and most people are prepared with food and water for about two weeks. But let's get back to Katrina being a manufactured event.

Without taking away from the devastation, the pain and the losses of the Katrina victims - all for whom my heart goes out for, and I have family members that lost everything - Katrina was in my view a manufactured event but by the media. Why do I say this?

Let's travel back to 1992, Jeb Bush wasn't governor and President Bush wasn't president. South Florida, Homestead and South Miami in particular, got blown out of the map, literally, by Hurricane Andrew. I very much remember the coverage of the devastation of houses blown away, much like the devastation in Biloxi and the areas of Mississippi (devastation that is ignored in favor of New Orleans coverage).

The cities were flattened. Yet, I have to say, not living in FL at the time, that I don't remember even seeing 50% of the coverage I've seen in the past 12 months regarding Katrina, no Andrew one year later or surviving Andrew specials, no reporter - such as Brian Williams - dedicated to the progress and reconstruction process, no outrage, nothing.

I feel like Katrina was manufactured by the media, because of the race class issue. That the media decided to make it an event. Let me explain, all circumstances being exactly the same - the poor preparation, the mishandling of aid, the devastation, the abandonment - but we change the race, instead of the Black poor, we have the White poor...would the coverage and outrage had been the same? I think not. The media wouldn't have given it as much coverage.

And I ask those of you who survived Andrew, and have seen Katrina, how do they compare? Did you feel abandoned? Was there more coverage and I'm just not remembering it? Or were the Hispanics of Homestead and South Florida ignored by the media?

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Saturday, August 26, 2006

I Don't Cooperate, Do You?

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Bad, Bad, Bad Idea

Survivor will now have ETHNIC tribes. Sure, let's just further and strengthen the ethnic and racial divide in America; Blacks, Asians, Hispanics and White. Who in their right minds thought this would be a good idea?

(H/T Michelle Malkin)

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CNN and Osama Bin Laden

Did you watch "In the Footsteps of Bin Laden" last night on CNN? No? Well you should've. Watch it on Sunday at 7pm EST. I missed the first hour and was sort of skeptical as to what kind of a report CNN had put together, being they are extremely biased to the left.

Whether you are extreme right, Republican or Democrat, know what we are dealing with, or an extreme left wing fanatic who believes the US will be safe if we leave Iraq you have to watch this report. Even more if you are one of the latter.

Osama was very clear, we will only be safe if we submit. Submit to Islam that is; accept the ways of Islam and you will be safe. So, you want to be safe from a terrorist attack? Convert to Islam! They want a theocracy government in the US, with of course, sharia law implemented. Then, to him, the US will no longer be the "greatest terrorist".

The report puts you face to face with exactly how crazy and deranged this people are; how much hate they harbor to us - and not just the government. Osama, more than once, spoke of killing Americans including civilians. All Americans are a target. Get that? All Americans - women, children, men, elderly, everyone.

A CIA operative was interviewed stating that they had a chance to bomb out Osama during the Clinton years - but they didn't because they saw swings in the backyard. While not wanting to harm children is commendable, even that ideal will change after watching this report. How Osama tailors his own children to continue his work when he is gone - even his daughter. How in the camps they train kids from about 7 years up and mold them into terrorists.

Here is a man who first hatches up a plan, and then finds the religious loophole to sell it to his people; to make the killing conform to Islam. A manipulator. He is no holy man, this is not religious fanatism on his part. This is pure power, pure hate, pure wish of domination.

Funny, the US is always being blamed of policing the world - you know Team America style. But what everyone who criticizes the war on terror, who thinks this is Bush or Republican rhetoric, does not understand is that this terrorist want to dictate our politics, our foreign policy, our government. When they threaten us because of our allies, because of what we do, or where we are - they are intruding and meddling in our sovereignty.

Extreme left wingers tell the government to stay out of Cuban politics and respect their sovereignty - how come I don't see the same passion from them towards Muslim terrorists? Is there a double standard?

I've long said that what the Muslim extremists want is the rebirth of a Moor Empire. Last night's report, was proof of that. Osama said it best in his message of warning to America (conforming to Islam teachings) - you will only be safe when you accept the ways of Islam.

No one, absolutely no one will dictate to me what religion I need to accept. NO ONE. Wake up everyone, we are in this for the long haul - Iraq or no Iraq; Israel or no Israel. They hate US - as in both us and America.

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Wednesday, August 23, 2006

The Price of Illegal Immigration

Update: Catch and release ends, 'bout time!

WaPo today covers the report from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office on the cost of implementing the stalled Immigration Reform Bill that would give a path to citizenship to all illegal immigrants here for more than two years. Personally, I think giving them legal residence would've been more appropriate; I just cannot agree with the idea of rewarding someone who broke the law. In addition, I think that most of them will not become citizens anyway as they are not here to be Americans, they are here to work, make money and give their families back in their native countries a better life.

Back to the report. You can read the WaPo article here, but I will cover both sides of the coin, the expenses we as a nation MUST incur, and the expenses that come about from absorbing all the illegals.

First we have to incur the following costs:

The CBO's five-year cost estimates include $800 million to hire 1,000 additional Border Patrol agents; $2.6 billion to build detention facilities for 20,000; $3.3 billion to build and maintain 370 miles of border fencing and 500 miles of vehicle barriers along the U.S.-Mexico frontier; and $1.6 billion to establish a computerized system to verify the eligibility of applicants for lawful employment.
I'm a big advocate of law enforcement so I find this measures in dire need of implementation. However, the report does not consider securing the northern border nor the ports which are essential not only to control illegal immigration but in the efforts of Homeland Security. Now to what it is estimated absorbing the illegals will cost:
Over the next decade, legalized workers and their families, in addition to guest workers and theirs, would claim $24.5 billion in tax refunds through the earned income credit and child credit, $15.4 billion in Medicare and Medicaid, $5.2 billion in Social Security benefits and $3.7 billion in food stamps and child nutrition programs, the report estimates.
Aside from the financial factor, we also have to consider the population number factor:
The CBO study, released Friday evening, not only details the Senate bill's cost but also enumerates the plan's impact on the population. By 2016, CBO researchers estimate, more than 16 million people would either become legal permanent residents under the bill or attain some other legal status. That total includes 4.4 million legalized undocumented workers, 3.3 million guest workers and 2.6 million family members brought in through the new programs. By 2026, the addition to the U.S. population would jump to 24.4 million.
This 24.4 million, is of course, as long as we as a nation can control the illegal immigration through border crossing and ships from Asia. So let's do some math. The enforcement will be about $8.4 billion and the cost of absorbtion will be $49 billion. What I would like to see is an estimate of how many of these costs are a one time fee and how many are ongoing. This report will certainly fuel the debate over immigration from both sides.

As for me, I'll keep saying, SECURE THE BORDERS FIRST, then figure out what the next step is. Unless you stop the leak first, you can never take all the water out.

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Who's better off since 1959, Cubans or Puerto Ricans?

Sounds like a trick question, right? Well it isn't. Havana Journal posted this very same questions two days ago. Yours truly was the very first comment/answer and a few more people have commented. Some say Puerto Ricans, and others - believe it or not - say Cubans.

It seems to me that above anything else, the right to live and the right to health are the singular most important and basic rights of a human being, with the right to an education being next, and on all these counts Cuba excels over Puerto Rico.
And that, coming from someone who's nickname is MiamiCuban. In my opinion, freedom simply is the most important basic right and does not have a price.

Since my readership includes both Cubans and Puerto Ricans, I encourage you all to go over there and give your two cents.

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Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Iran fires on Romanian oil rig

I guess Iran does not want anyone doing any offshore drilling, as they have "invaded" this oil rig. The Middle East is trigger finger happy or is this part of the announced War Games?.

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Valladares takes down the Cuban "Catholic" Church

Today's must read comes from none other than Armando Valladares. In his editorial, he takes on the Catholic Church in Cuba and how it has silently and idly stood by and never taken a position against the regime; sometimes even "supporting" it. However, this has not driven him away from his faith.

For years now I have had the painful obligation in conscience to write articles denouncing ecclesiastical collaboration with Cuban communism. I did this for a number of reasons. I had survived more than twenty years as a political prisoner in Castro’s dungeons.

During that time, my Catholic faith was strengthened by the cries of young martyrs who died by firing squad shouting ‘Long live Christ the King, down with Communism!" To make matters worse, I had to resist, along with my companions in misfortune, ecclesiastical pressure to accept ideological ‘reeducation’ and wear the prison uniform of common criminals.

However, I was finally able, almost miraculously, to leave the island-prison, having "hoped against all hope," as St. Paul puts it. (emphasis mine)

I urge you to read the entire editorial here.

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Sunday, August 20, 2006

Raul Downed the Planes

El Nuevo Herald revealed today what we always knew; Raúl ordered the downing of the two civilian Hermanos al Rescate planes - just listen to his order, if you dare. Hijo de Puta.

In case you need a refresher about the incident, you can go here.

This is two days in a row that real news come out of Cuba. Something is going on.

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Saturday, August 19, 2006

Housing Shortage in Cuba

El Nuevo Herald published today an article on Cuba not meeting their housing goals. The article is in Spanish, and I couldn't find it in English, so I'll cover some of the basics:

Cuba will not meet its new housing goals this year due to the ups and downs of petroleum prices, official sources said.
Hmmm. I thought they got free, I'm sorry, discounted oil from Venezuela. And what about all that cement they donated, excuse me, sold to Jamaica..that wouldn't have anything to do with it, now would it?
He added, that for 2006, 72,094 houses would be built with "the efforts of the people" and 42,524 with joint efforts from the State and the families.
But, I thought everyone in Cuba had a roof over their heads provided by the Revolution; I had no clue they had to BUILD IT THEMSELVES. If the people are supposed to build their own houses how does this relate to the price of oil or not affecting the Battle of Ideas Works such as hospitals and schools?
Rene Lozano, Director of Housing, pointed to two delaying factors in meeting the housing goal: (1) the price of oil and (2) "the importance of not affecting the efforts of the Battle of Ideas (hospitals, schools and other institutions with social and economic repercussions)."
Interesting, hospitals and schools first, who cares if people have a place to live as long as they are getting indoctrinated at the places of the Battle of Ideas. Huh?

The article then details how the hurricanes during the past four years have damaged more than 500,000 houses and destroyed more thatn 70,000 - goes to show how no one is taking care of the country's infrastructure - and even the Cuban government agrees stating that 52.5% of the constructions on the island are in bad shape.

But surely everyone in Cuba has a house, after all isn't one of the pillars of the revolution equal rights, housing, education and healthcare for all?
Housing is one of Cuba's biggest structural problems. Official estimate a deficit of more 500,000 houses.
That's houses; people without them when you consider families are even a bigger number. If you calculate a family of two per each non-existent house that's about 10% of the population that's homeless in a country that boasts of not having a poor and/or homeless class. But why are all these people without homes? Surely they are a priority for the government! Well not exactly.
"We've had to give priority to those who were left homeless due to a hurricane."
What? So if I've been 5, 7, 10 years without a home I still have to wait until someone that already had a home gets a new one? What happened to equal right and no poor class? I thought the revolution did not prioritize, I thought everyone was equal. Hey at least it wasn't blamed on the embargo.

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Friday, August 18, 2006

Set Them Free!

Update: Welcome Michelle Malkin readers! Feel free to browse around!

They are not criminals; they are fathers, brothers, husbands; they are independent journalists who have been silenced. Not because they are dead, but because they dared speak out in the name of freedom and democracy. They are now political prisoners.

Their typewriters don't work, and some have been denied access to the internet and are dying in protest; they are relentless and unstoppable. They want the truth to come out at all costs.

Today is IAPA's call for all journalists to unite and request the immediate liberattion of these jailed voices and minds. Please let's all scream in unison:


Ricardo Alfonso, Pedro Argüelles, Victor Arroyo, Armando Bentancourt, Mijail Bárzaga, José Caraballo, José Castillo, Adolfo Fernández, José Ferrer, Alfredo Fuentes, Miguel Galván, José García, Alejandro González, Lester González, Oscar González, Roberto Guerra, Julio Gálvez, Iván Hernández, Normándo Hernández, Juan Herrera, José Izquierdo, Hector Maseda, Pablo Pacheco, Fabio Prieto, Alfredo Pulido, Omar Rodríguez, Omar Ruíz

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Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Calling all Bloggers and all Newspapers

Mark your calendars and speak up in unison on August 18, 2006 and request the immediate freedom of jailed Cuban journalists.

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True Color Politics

And Hispanics thought they were better off with the Democrats. Heh.

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Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Ignorance and Slavery

Yesterday it was Harlem celebrating slavery; today it is San Francisco who celebrates slavery. What the hell is wrong with this people?

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Martha Beatriz Roque

Found this gem of an interview of Martha Beatriz Roque - as no nonsense as always - with Italian journalist Adriano Farano who had to endure two hours of questioning at customs in the airport on his way out. The price to pay in Cuba for wanting to get the correct information. Here is the money quote for me:

“I thought that the EU would have been stronger. In effect the Spanish government is pushing for friendship with Havana,” she explains.
Hear that Europeans? I urge all of you - Europeans and non-Europeans - to read it.

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Monday, August 14, 2006

Holocaust Cartoon Fair

Uptade: Uncommon Sense has pictures.

Yup, read right. There is a Fair (more like a contest) of cartoon's depicting the Holocaust. Remember Iran's promise during the Mohammed Cartoon debacle? Well, Iran is a country of its word.

"We staged this fair to explore the limits of freedom Westerners believe in," Masoud Shojai, head of the country's "Iran Cartoon" association and the fair organizer, said. "They can freely write anything they like about our prophet, but if one raises doubts about the Holocaust he is either fined or sent to prison," he added.
Are they expecting riots? Perhaps the Jews of the world to cause the destruction their Muslim counterparts did when the Mohammed cartoon's were published? Are they aware that you get "fined or sent to prison" only in Europe? This just seems like a silly excuse to of course, denigrate Jews yet once again. Grow up.

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Castro, drop dead!

According to this editorial, that would solve all of Cuba's woes and in turn save the Everglades.

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Friday, August 11, 2006

The Power of Words

I was sitting here thinking what to write: Terrorism, the Bearded Stooge's impending death, Israel and Hezbollah.....and all of a sudden I get the following email, from the trenches of Cuban dissidency:

Compatriotas: Por temor a perjudicarnos no podemos continuar vasallos. LLegó el momento de asumir con dignidad el desafío de reconstruir nuestra nación, El cambio depende de nosotros y está en cada uno de nosotros. Controlemos el miedo.
For my non-Spanish speaking readers, that message loosely translates to:
My fellow men: We cannnot continue to be followers out of fear. The time has come to accept with dignity the challenge of reconstructing our nation. Change depends on us, and is within everyone of us. Let's control our fear.


Strong words, strong meaningful words that need no comments - they speak for themselves. Let's pray that all Cuban dissidents can do as this one suggest: Stop being followers out of fear; bring about change.

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Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Gotta Love the Ticos

Oscar Arias, president of Costa Rica, recently cancelled a meeting with Cuban Vice-President Carlos Lage because - get this - Lage took some topics of the table. In particular, Arias wanted to send a message to Raul - if he inherits command of Cuba look for a democratic transition.

Of course, this was not approved by Lage, and Arias said he would not have anyone telling him which topics he can or cannot discuss so he cancelled the meeting. Reminds me a bit of a past Salvadorian president who had the balls to stand up to The Bearded Stooge. Why don't we have any of those here?

You can read the story in Spanish here. If you find it in English (I didn't) please post it in the comments.

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