Barack, "He Walks Between Worlds"

Barack, "He Walks Between Worlds."

I have been looking for those four words forever. And now help comes in the form of
Maya Soetoro-Ng, his half-sister. I have long thought, I like this guy at a very fundamental level. What is it, what is it?

In my very own person, two countries live, Nepal and India. To a lot of folks in America accustomed to color coded thinking, both might look brown, but I will have to offer that the ethnic politics in a country like Nepal are way more complicated than the racial politics in America.

I lost something in 1989. I feel like I might regain it through Barack's elevation to the White House. I have faced challenges of dealing with many different worlds. Now you can be serene about it, and can almost feel like you are in fashion, like this century belongs to you and people like you, but when you are dealing with it at periods in your life when you don't even have the vocabulary to describe what you are going through, you can't think of anyone who does, it is not fun. There are leftover emotional scars. You try to move beyond them by revisiting the past in your mind. You revisit in hopes of liberation. So you can become capable again of easy conversation with the multitude, easy laughs, small gestures of bonding.

My support for Barack is personal, it is selfish, it is about me. The proof is in the pudding. I am not a voter. I can't vote for the dude. You could say there is some of the political animal in me. The process fascinates me. I am no Dick Morris. I could not bring myself to advise non progressives. Even among progressives I am picky. I am no Karl Rove. That dude could not run for public office himself in a thousand years. If I were citizen, and I set my mind to it, I think I could have become the guy to succeed Bloomberg. (DL21C Annual Summer Bash: Barack Won The Straw Poll, 7 Point Agenda For New York City) But I am not a citizen. And when I think of masses of people, I don't think New Yorkers, I don't think Americans, I think Third World people. My people are those. My fascination is with group dynamics. I don't enjoy beer, I don't enjoy shaking hands. I have determined my startup is the best, most efficient way to do the most good by my people. So my expression of my fascination with group dynamics will be corporate, curiously. But at least it will be a progressive company.

My selfish interest in a Barack presidency also is that I want to contribute to the goal of a total spread of democracy by 2020. I am a Buddhist. One concrete thing I want to do for my faith is to see Tibet as a state in a federal China that is a multi-party democracy. I have to stay in the private sector, and I have to do my activism the digital democrat way, I don't have the patience for the slow, non digital versions, but a friendship with a POTUS can go a long way in enhancing your impact when you are trying to spread democracy.

When I first started experiencing prejudice and racism, my initial feelings were always of disbelief. People at primitive levels of group dynamics and political consciousness were engaging in acts that were not in the best interests of all concerned. It was as if they were not even driven by self-interest. A little while later you realize they are moved by self-interest the way they understand that to be, or like Newt said once, "Because I can." That was logic enough.

Barack's appeal to me is not that some black man will be in the White House. When I think of cultural diversity, I think of coral reefs. Barack reminds me of that richness. It feels like good background music.

Cultural diversity is a kaleidoscope experience.

In The News

Photo of Karachi bomber released Reuters Newspapers carried photographs of the head of the suicide bomber propped on a white sheet. The dead eyes stared blankly out of a chubby, unshaven face. ....... "The age of the suspect is between 20 to 25 and he looks to be a Karachiite," said a security official ....... On Saturday, a car bomb killed four people in the southwestern province of Baluchistan. ...... Suicide bombings have multiplied since the army stormed the Red Mosque in the capital Islamabad to crush an armed student movement in July. ...... Angry Bhutto supporters burnt tires, threw rocks at cars and forced shops to shut in some Karachi neighborhoods on Saturday ...... she retained more mass appeal than any other Pakistani politician. ...... Government officials have said the culprits were Islamist militants but they are uncertain which group. ...... said she had more to fear from unidentified members of the power structure who she described as allies of the "forces of militancy".
Chain of errors blamed for nuclear arms going undetected Los Angeles Times That August flight, the first known incident in which the military lost track of its nuclear weapons since the dawn of the atomic age, lasted nearly three hours, until the bomber landed at Barksdale Air Force Base in northern Louisiana. ....... allowing the plane to take off Aug. 30 with crew members unaware that they were carrying enough destructive power to wipe out several cities. ......... The Air Force has fired four colonels who oversaw aircraft and weapons operations at Minot and Barksdale, and some junior personnel have also been disciplined ...... human error, rather than inadequate procedures, were at fault.
Turkey expects US actions against Kurd rebels-PM Reuters
Putin goes live on TV phone-in to escalate nuclear war of words Guardian Unlimited Putin said Russia would defend itself if the US goes ahead with its plan to install elements of its missile shield in central Europe. ...... unsuccessful talks last week with the US secretary of state, Condoleezza Rice, and the defence secretary, Robert Gates ..... Putin began their meeting in Moscow by signalling that Russia might dump the intermediate-range nuclear missiles treaty. ........ Putin fielded 68 questions yesterday from ordinary Russians living in nine time zones across the world's biggest country. .... Beginning in Vladivostok, where it was dark, he discussed the price of milk, IVF treatment, and the fate of Russia's provincial towns. One caller was so stunned to speak directly to the president she forgot her question. "Is it you?" she said. "Yes," Mr Putin said. "Is it really you?" she asked. "Yes," he repeated. "Thank you very much for everything, Vladimir Vladimirovich," she gasped. She then hung up. ....... a message to Washington: that its new and costly missile shield was effectively useless against the latest Russian technology. ..... manoeuvrable warheads, which detach from the main missile during the final stage of descent. ....... The US-led invasion of Iraq had been a failure, he said, as was its strategy of confrontation with Iran over its alleged nuclear programme. ..... "Direct dialogue with the leaders of states ... is the shortest path to success, rather than a policy of threats, sanctions, and a resolution to use force." ...... More than a million people sent questions by email, text or phone
Sarkozy Faces Labor and Marital Crises New York Times Portraying herself as a woman scorned, Ms. Royal was quoted in a book leaked to the news media that night as saying, “I asked François Hollande to leave our home, to pursue his love interest, which is now laid bare in books and newspapers, on his own.” ...... “She no longer wanted to participate in the life of the president, in public life” ...... Sarkozy was “very serene” and “had turned the page.” ...... “She left; she came back. When she came back, they perhaps thought that it could go back like before. It did not.” ..... The current strikes, which started Wednesday evening, were not as dramatic as had been anticipated, perhaps reflecting a shifting public mood that economic changes are necessary. ........ plans to change France’s special pension privileges enjoyed by 500,000 workers and 1.1 million retirees, mostly in the state-run transportation and utilities sector but also by parliamentary deputies, fishermen and miners. The privileges, which, for example, allow workers in the electric and railroad industries to retire at 50 with a full pension, have created an annual shortfall of $7 billion that taxpayers have to shoulder. ...... Sarkozy is determined to level the playing field by bringing these so-called special public sector pensions in line with the private sector. ....... Known for his quick temper, and suffering episodically from migraines ....... “Even today, I have difficulty talking about it,” he wrote in his 2006 campaign book, “Testimony,” of their months apart when she left him, apparently for another man, in 2005. “I had never known such an ordeal. Never would I have imagined that I would be so profoundly distressed.”
A Hubbub Over a Visit by the Dalai Lama? Not in New York New York Times has come to this city so often in recent years that his visits now fly under the radar of most New Yorkers. ....... They went into rhetorical overdrive. The Communist Party boss of Tibet denounced the Dalai Lama as a “splittist.” There’s a word you don’t hear every day. Sounds like someone who likes his Champagne in small bottles. In this context, it is an accusation that the Dalai Lama wants to break Tibet away from China. ........ Tibet House, a cultural center in Manhattan. ...... The Congressional medal got Beijing’s knickers in such a twist that the Chinese warned of “an extremely serious impact” on their relations with the United States. ....... Maybe they’ll stop sending us any more lead-painted toys, defective tires, toxic toothpaste and tainted pet food. Wouldn’t that be awful? ........ At the Javits Center, he spoke without notes for two hours ....... The Dalai Lama has become such a regular here that he no longer automatically draws much press attention. .... Bloomberg invited him to a Gracie Mansion breakfast last Friday with 20 or so New York Buddhists. ....... the mayor wanted the Dalai Lama’s appearance to be a surprise to the other guests. ...... The Dalai Lama spoke of “how his main concern was that people studied Buddhism, not just sort of adhere to it” ..... “Faith was nice. But from his point of view, understanding Buddhism would really be the most useful for people.” ...... TO the surprise of no one, the Dalai Lama did not stop by one of the city’s main attractions. That would be the United Nations. It is too much in China’s thrall to ever invite him, even just to look around the building.
Nobel Winner Issues Apology for Comments About Blacks New York Times
Patrick to endorse Obama at Boston Common rally on Tuesday
Boston Herald
Can Hillary Clinton win?
Chicago Tribune Ever since Clinton stepped onto the presidential stage with her husband, she has been a lightning rod on the right and sometimes the left. She offended some women when she defended her decision to work, saying, "I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies and had teas." She raised eyebrows when the public learned she had turned $1,000 into $100,000 from cattle futures trading. And she became a political target when she tried to overhaul the health-care system with closed-door meetings. .......... Already, the Republican National Committee is taking aim at Clinton multiple times a day while virtually ignoring her rivals. ........ David Bonior, Edwards' campaign manager, said Republicans will "unload on her" in a general election ...... A CNN poll finds 45 percent of voters believe she is most likely to win the general election—far more than any other candidate. And the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute shows Clinton beating each of the Republican candidates in the key battlegrounds of Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania. ....... "I think you're seeing a higher level of frustration and desperation," said Mark Penn, Clinton's chief strategist, of Obama and Edwards. ...... "What I hear from [Republicans] is their disenchantment with the war in Iraq, the budget deficit and the feeling that their party has been taken away from them by extremists" ....... "I think the country is ready for a woman president," she said, "but Colorado is not." ...... Two friends sitting outside in the sunshine drinking coffee questioned the wisdom and the likelihood of another Clinton presidency. ......... leery of revisiting the "negative" elements of Bill Clinton's presidency ...... she didn't think Clinton could do worse in office than President Bush ....... "It certainly is brought up more by Democratic senators from red and purple states," said Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), who is backing Obama. "They feel that she would have to work hard to carry their states." ....... When Clinton first ran for the Senate from New York in 2000, few thought she could overcome voters' animus, but she won in a virtual landslide. ....... "I'm still looking," he said. "I won't make a decision until the very last minute, until I'm sure."
Gov. Granholm endorses Sen. Clinton for president Detroit Free Press
Granholm endorses Clinton with little fanfare Granholm's endorsement was of little surprise; political observers have widely seen her as a Clinton supporter ...... "While no state's economy has been hit harder by globalization and the Bush administration's unfair trade policies, no state stands to benefit more from the growth of new industries like alternative energy and from critical investments in training workers and improving health care," their statement said.
Michigan Governor Endorses Clinton The Associated Press
Hillary Clinton is battle-ready
Seattle Post Intelligencer she has slightly more than 50 percent approval of Democratic voters, an achievement that no other candidate in history has reached without going on to win the nomination. The general election next fall could be another matter ....... This is an exciting political time to be a woman, which I happen to be. When Clinton initially ran for the New York Senate seat, the common wisdom was that she was too pushy and lacking in feminine charm to win. ....... Such "wisdom," of course, came mostly from men. She was up against a nothingburger Republican male and ended up beating him by 12 percent. She won by being the harder-working, better-informed candidate. So much for that sexist myth. ........ Conservative commentators suggested the country was not ready for a female president, particularly one seen as "polarizing," by which they mean she's as partisan as they are. ........ she has the support of 57 percent of Democratic women ..... In a general election match-up with leading GOP contender Rudy Giuliani, she has a lead credited almost entirely to women. ........ a potential downside to this. Will male voters become resentful? The concept of a political backlash is ever-present. Will men be fearful their wives may want to upstage them? I know some men like that, and I bet you do, too. ......... Iowa .... Traditional ideas still linger about burly male farmers used to hard labor in the fields, and docile female housewives who raise the children and bake cookies. But this image is fading ......... When she began, she treated the gender issue gingerly ....... She is not so touchy about that now. In interviews, she insists she is trying to appeal to men, too. But she is specifically framing some of her ideas toward women .......... She proposed expanding the family and medical leave act, which protects the jobs of workers who take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for family emergencies such as pregnancy or illness. The law only covers employers with more than 50 workers. She would lower that to 25 workers, bringing protection to 13 million additional workers but angering the small-business lobby, which claims it cannot afford to keep these jobs open. She would also go further, giving grants to states to reimburse companies for paying their workers for seven days annual sick leave -- a concept that drives businesses nuts. This idea, however, is bound to please workers and unions. And a large number of retail employees paid a minimum wage are women who are the family primary caregiver and would appreciate the paid time off. ......... When Walter Mondale picked Geraldine Ferraro to be the first female running mate on a major national ticket, the 1984 Democratic convention hall became a sea of joyful female boo-hoos. I joined in but have never cried for a politician since. ....... She has, however, survived her own "pushy wife" lumps -- the kind that Jeri Thompson and Judi Giuliani are just now painfully experiencing. She has emerged as her own woman, her own political leader, and she is battle-ready. Mount the barricades! Iowa, here she comes!

Obama, Citing 'Offensive Remarks,' Calls for Justice Dept. Voting ... FOX News remarks made about elderly minorities not aging like white Americans, because they die first. ..... called the language "erroneous, offensive, and dangerous." ...... Obama on Friday pointed to one portion of Tanner's comments as evidence that voter ID restrictions "do not disenfranchise minorities, and in fact they actually benefit minorities." ....... "There are inequities in health care," Tanner continued. "There are a variety of inequities in this country. And so anything that disproportionately impacts the elderly has the opposite impact on minorities; just the math is such as that." ....... "For Mr. Tanner to now suggest, in an effort to defend his erroneous decision, that photo identification are not necessary for minority voters because 'they die first' shows just how far the Justice Department has fallen," Obama wrote.
Barack Obama Straddles Different Worlds The Associated Press also was a way for this son of an African goat herder, this Harvard-educated lawyer, author and professor to show he could be just one of the guys. ......... He had already navigated the exotic corners of Hawaii and Indonesia, the halls of privilege of Cambridge, Mass., and the poverty-wracked streets of Chicago ........ bridging gaps, making connections, forging alliances. ....... "He walks between worlds," says Maya Soetoro-Ng, his half-sister. "That's what he's done his entire life." ...... From their mother, she says, "he gets his ability to build bridges, to keep an open mind." ...... From their grandmother, Madelyn: "his pragmatism." ...... From their grandfather, Stanley: "his love of the game. My grandfather ... pursued life with great zest." ..... In Hawaii, Obama was a scholarship student at Punahou School, a private academy in Honolulu, where he was an outgoing kid with an easy laugh. Obama — then known as Barry — grew into a teen who listened to Earth, Wind & Fire, tooled around in his grandfather's old Ford Granada, sang in the choir and joined the literary journal. ........ Friends says Obama never spoke of the turmoil he revealed in his memoir, "Dreams from My Father," in which he wrote about wrestling with his racial identity and using drugs — including marijuana and cocaine to "push questions of who I was out of my mind." .......... as one of the few blacks in the school, "I probably questioned my identity a bit harder than most. As a kid from a broken home and family of relatively modest means, I nursed more resentments than my circumstances justified, and I didn't always channel those resentments in particularly constructive ways." ........ "He had no trouble challenging power and challenging people on issues," says Gerald Kellman, the man who hired him to work for the Developing Communities Project. "When it came to face-to-face situations, he valued civility a great deal. When it came to negotiating conflict, he was very good." .......... "This man was so bright, but he didn't hit you over the head with it," recalls Loretta Augustine-Herron. "He explained things so nobody would be offended." ........ The women doted on him, chiding him for not eating enough, laughing when he showed off his dance moves, joking about his punctuality — warning each other that "baby-faced Obama" would be angry if they didn't get to a meeting on time. ........ In Chicago, Obama also honed his writing skills, crafting short stories inspired by real-life experiences. ...... Former classmates and professors remember him as a conciliator with sound judgment. ...... "He wasn't someone that you simply wanted to read his class notes or hear his voice," says Charles Ogletree, a Harvard law professor who served as a mentor to Obama and other black students. "You wanted to hear him thinking." ......... "He did not take that pound-on-my-chest attitude, 'Look at me, I'm the first one,'" says Earl Martin Phalen, a black classmate. "He was conscious of the historical significance but understood ... there was a responsibility." ......... As a newcomer in the clubby atmosphere of Springfield, Obama also encountered cold shoulders. Some lawmakers initially thought he was arrogant. ........ "It took him a while to prove that he was a real guy" ....... "If he was going to play the hand, he knew it was a hand he could win," says state Sen. Terry Link. "That's his politics, too. He's not going to do it just to do it." ....... It took just 17 minutes for Barack Obama to create a national buzz.