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The International Writer's Magazine
2017
Our 18th Year on-line

*Hackwriters is digitally archived by the British Library

Share | - edited by Sam North

The International Writers Magazine: LIFESTYLES & COMMENT - ARCHIVE 2014/2016
LIFESTYLES
OPINION

Exile on Main Street
Dean Borok

I once had a cousin who was hanged at the U.S. Army prison in San Francisco as a thief. He did the hanging himself, one day before he was scheduled to be released.
Martial Arts Styles Do Exist
Antonio Graceffo

Recently, I have heard a lot of people claiming that there are no martial arts styles, only “good technique” and “bad technique.” But this is simply not the case.
Workawaying in Portugal: Adventurous Language Learning - Joseph Oberwinzer
My first thought was “I must flee at once.”
The Body Experiment
James Campion

I found a way to cut your cholesterol numbers in half in 40 days and so can you.
A Tourist in my own Town
Justin Dupée

My Fantastic Voyage through the Streets of Hip Hop’s Past- As I hook a left onto Anaheim Blvd I try and imagine how different the street might have been twenty-five or so years prior.
Whitehall
Shannon N. Snyder

I descended into Euston station, pulled further down by the fast pace of the crowd on their way to work, just like me. The escalators took me further and further underground
Dear ‘Comrades’
Tom Kilcourse

So, you lost the election and your leader. No doubt you are reviewing your position and your policies in an effort to discover why you lost. I cannot give you the answer, but I can tell you why you lost my vote.
Saul Bellow - The Biography
Dean Borok

I am sunk into Zachary Leader’s biography of my uncle, Saul Bellow, and all my relations like a man whose whole life flashes back to him in the instant before his death ...
Paris Blues
Dean Borok

I don’t know how it is today, but when I was a kid in Chicago, a place like France wasn't on the map at all. If France ever entered the conversation at all, it was on a level of perfumed lace panties.
Hemlock for Everyone -
The Drinks are on Me
Dean Borok

One of the hardest things in life is to face up to your own deficiencies. In this I have been lucky to know so many people willing to point them out to me.
A Day in the Life
Mel Hamson

Autism is a life-long condition present from early childhood, for which the cause is unknown and there’s no cure.
Nigeria relies on renewable energy
Odimegwu Onwumere
Nigeria targeting to accomplish 7 percent renewable energy use by 2025.
Housekeeping
Ben Rietema in New Zealand

Three times a week, we order the linen. Three times a week we receive an arbitrary amount of towels and sheets that may or may not actually apply to what we first ordered
A Hard Blow - Spain in Flux
James Skinner

Andalusia has the highest unemployment rate and the greatest number of corrupt politicians and trade union leaders embezzling public funds
Mysteries of the Philippines
Fred C. Wilson III

A few years ago the Philippine National Police confiscated stolen antiquities smugglers tried to unload on the black market.
How to be a traveler with a plan
Andra Badea

Wanderlust. A word that means discovering oneself through travel. But it also implies that you can’t do that unless you aimlessly walk around.
Obesity
John Alexander

Obesity is a big problem in the United States- and I have a theory about where it all started.
Truth and Consequences
Dean Borok

People these days are less inclined than ever to state obvious facts, because if the truth came out it would mean the end of civilization as we know it.
Typo Confession
Julie McSmith

Father, I am sorry for I have sinned.  In particular, I am sorry for having made certain typos and mistaken contractual stipulations.
Joanna North
In Memory of Joanna North
(25.1.20 -13.2.15)
'No one is 'just' a mother - I am all I have accomplished'.
The dangers of red objects
Jodie Corney

I prowled the railway station platform, listening to the same song over and over, my life caught in a stutter. I wore a faux fur coat even though it was a very warm late spring day.
Rape Culture & Reponses to Adaptation
Phillip Sutcliffe-Mott
Rape culture comes for the most part from conservative ignorance and mass complacency
When up is down, Perceptions in Linguistics -
Antonio Graceffo

On a map 'up' is something we have all accepted that up is North. There is no reason for that. We just all agreed on it.
This language is easy or difficult because I said so
Antonio Graceffo

An American kid I met in Phnom Penh today told me Korean language was not difficult. He said, “Easy to read, easy to write.”
The Art of Bliss
Jude C Perera

It is a beautiful concept, or is it just a myth? Happiness. I am not too sure sometimes. But I enjoy meditating on its infinite potential.
The Man in the High Castle
Sam Hawksmoor

This has long been one of my favourite Philip K Dick novels and probably one his most fully realised works and is now on Amazon TV
Where are we now…?
K E Sidwell

You’ve finished your degree ... Can you now honestly define in a nutshell what excites you - “the career path you want to take”?
Besame Mucho
Dean Borok

Dancers are the ultimate snobs. She may work in an office or sorting mail all day, but on the dancefloor she is a star, and what the hell are you?
Police Line: Do Not Cross
Dean Borok

A lot of this sloganeering of “Support the Police” can be construed as a declaration of war on Black people.
Nigeria still at 54
The bad-luck of having Leaders that cannot lead
Adewale T Akande
A set of leaders are now tearing apart what is supposed to be the giant of Africa
A Loose Guide to Conventions
Patrick J. Ferri Jr.

Conventions have risen to geeky prominence the same way that Steve Jobs and Bill Gates have. That is, while everyone has heard the names like ComiCon, E3, PAX, A-Kon and DragonCon, no one in their right mind has any idea what the appeal is.
Nationalism and Democracy
Tom Kilcourse

Nationalism has received a bad press in recent years, particularly in the British media.
Discoveries
Walli F. Leff out West

The trail along the Deschutes River in beautiful Tumwater Falls Park, just outside of Olympia, Washington, passes by the waterfalls...
Asian-American Marriages
Fred C. Wilson III

Romanticism is the biggest blight to the concept of life-long marriage
I Can't Breathe!
James Campion

Daniel Pantaleo killed Eric Garner. He choked him to death while four other men held him down and pulled his hands behind his back and proceeded to cuff him, leaning all of his weight on the man’s head as he pleaded, “I can’t breathe! I can’t breathe!”
Turning Back the Clock
Tom Kilcourse

Critics of the present state of Britain’s economy and society are frequently advised that ‘we cannot turn the clock back’, or told that what is happening is somehow ‘natural’.
Podemos - Yes 'We Can'

Spain's Coming Revolution
James Skinner

Spain would be led towards the Third Republic following in the steps of the 1930's, imposing a totalitarian and communist regime that could isolate the country from Europe and the rest of the world.
The Devil Made Me Do It

Dean Borok

Bill Cosby is now revealed to be incapable of doing what he has insistently been advising the younger generation to do – pull your pants up.
Optimism for 2015
Hawksmoor & North

Leaning to Live the Now
Mike Nichols 1931–2014
James Campion on The Graduate

I hate endings. Never liked them; in books, films, sometimes songs (especially fades – what the hell is that?), whatever ...
Dear Dave
Tom Kilcourse

Dave asks me to trust his government with the economy and not to threaten the remarkable economic progress being made. I feel obliged to reply.
Values
Tom Kilcourse

Over forty years ago Milton Friedman declared that corporations have no social responsibility...
Video Kingdom
Dean Borok

Now that we’re living in Video Kingdom, with drones flying over volcanos and speed demons racing motorcycles down bobsled tracks wearing a helmet camera, let’s take a minute and get back down to earth.
An old fashioned Hero
Leroy B. Vaughn

I’m sure by now that readers are aware of the lone wolf terrorist that attacked the Canadian Parliament on Oct. 22, 2014.
Spitting Into the Wind
Tom Kilcourse

There are a number of indications around that we are coming to the end of three decades of self-delusion and economic lunacy. During that period, since 1980, we have been following a single, narrow economic philosophy that goes by the name of neo-liberalism.
10 Reasons to Participate in Cultural Festivals
Alina Jersey
Cultural Festivals are meant to celebrate the heritage and culture of the hosts.
Sturgeon Landing in Indian Country
Fred C. Wilson III

I volunteered to join our parish’s Legion of Mary for our annual mission trip abroad. For a month I was to minister to the Cree Indians.
A Requiem for a Sri Lankan Christmas
Jude C Perera

For the past two decades, may be more, I have been haunted by the ghost of Christmas past.
The Rules of Engagement
Jude. C. Perera

I was a casualty of war, there is no better way of putting it. It’s a war that was both sinister and stealthy and famously lacking in any decency and chivalry. I have been stabbed in the back without ever feeling the dagger
Bert
Tom Kilcourse

In the late forties Bert lived in a Manchester rooming house of which my mother was the concierge. Unlike most of his contemporaries he had managed somehow to avoid military service during the war.
Coping in Laos
Lucy Munday

A chill runs down my back as I walk around the COPE Centre in Vientiane. I am surrounded by empty bombs - ghosts of the industry of war.
Clueless In Gaza
Dean Borok

You got to hand it to the Arabs of Gaza: they can burrow more tunnels than the gopher in “Caddyshack”. Maybe we should get them over here to work on the Second Avenue subway tunnel
A Monsanto Twister
Paul Hunt
Falls City Municipal Court, Polk County, Oregon, is scheduled to hold a hearing on August 20, 2014, of a defense case using recently signed-into-law Senate Bill 863, otherwise known as the "Monsanto Bill".
The Remaining Anachronism
Tom Kilcourse

Odd as it may seem, there is no clear dividing line between the private sector of medicine and the monolithic NHS
How to Construct a Climate Change Simulator
Mark Pierro

There seems to be an awful lot of hullabaloo about climate change and the models used to attempt to simulate climate change and its effects across Chalfont-Saint-Peter, Berkshire...
The Art of Dissent
Madhura Shetty
I was in my 3rd year of college when suddenly before my last semester all my friends were freaking out about placements, all I could hear was, which MNC did you get into? How much are they paying you?
Living in Happy Valley
Fred C Wilson 111
Retirement living in Chicago - Up Close
The British & the Unions
Tom Kilcourse

...for all the rhetoric and angst, the British attitude to trade unions remains confused.
Brooklyn Monk Takes on Four Fighters in One Night
Greg Isaacson

Not quite kumite, but a spiritual victory for author-warrior
The Hidden Life of the African Feminist
Abigail George

The African feminist is the feminine intellectual who in the final analysis is the square peg who does not fit into the round hole
Life! No less than a struggle
Shubhi S

To be a writer
Kundadri Hill
Shubhi S

It has been said that “to witness best of the scenes one has to have the zest and the zeal to travel outstation”.
Quinn, Denise & Casey Kasem
G. David Schwartz

Things go in threes

Donating Plasma in Kentucky
Lawrence Hamilon

Giving plasma, to me, is as Kentuckian as watching rednecks wave the flag, eating junk food and hating on Democrats
Open Letter to My Wife 111
James Campion

In Which We Discover Your True Grit After 15 Years Married To The Author

Bar Mitvah Survival Techniques
Dean Borok

The problems with Bar Mitzvahs is that they are all about kids. I can take the three-hour ceremony in the synagogue. Everybody gets to say something, and it’s charming. But don’t invite me to the reception, where it’s six hours more of the same
Wrestling for San Da
Antonio Graceffo

It’s no secret that MMA in the US is dominated by former wrestlers. In fact, 8 of the 10 current UFC champions are former collegiate or high school wrestlers. In China, MMA is dominated by san da fighters.
SUS Wrestlers & San Da Fighters in the MMA Gym
Antonio Graceffo
I took my san da training mates and my wrestling teammates from Shanghai University of Sports to Fighters Unite MMA gym.
Moral Necessity of Veganism
Rob Marenghi
Please join me in imagining a planet where the following happens – billions of cats and dogs are raised in unpleasant conditions, killed and the eaten by humans.
Dear AR
Julie McSmith

I’m writing you a letter that I know you won’t be able to read, because you have dyslexia.  Yet, I feel I must write to you
Charles Addams Family Values
John M Edwards

In Westfield, New Jersey, I finally found the moody manse of cartoonist Charles Addams, probably The New Yorker’s most famous and fiendish cartoonist
The Oddness of Olaf Stapledon
John M. Edwards

Olaf’s far-sighted polemic philosophical books, not novels, still stay with readers long after digestion
A True Statesman
James Skinner on Sr Adolfo Suarez

Who was this Spanish political figure that most of Europe had forgotten about including a great deal of today’s young Spanish generations?
‘Ou est Baudelaire?’
Joe Swain

At about the age of 14, I decided to become French.
Shadow Facts
Thomas N. Hackney

One of the most telling, no incredible, indications of intelligent design in Peekskill meteor/impact event is seen in the impact itself...
Foreign Education in China
Antonio Graceffo

With tuition fees for foreign students of $38,000 or more per year, education in the US is way out of reach for the average Chinese family. The solution that China has found is to move the foreign education to China
Nigeria at 100: Taking This Country Where It Needs To Go - Prince Tonye Princewill
Looking around our country, it is not hard to focus first on the differences between us and dwell on the numerous negatives of today. Easy to miss the positives and overlook our strengths.
Rangoon's Colonial Architecture
Mark McGeachie
Somerset Maughan, George Orwell and Rudyard Kipling! What did they all have in common? Yes obviously famous authors - however they, along with many other celebrities, were also guests of the Strand Hotel in Rangoon
Dani Girl
Roy Valenzuela

When scrolling through the many faces of the google plus community, I mainly ignored all until I was slightly hooked and just had to take a look...
The Thievery of an Alchoholic
Roy Valenzuela

What a complicated perusal into the maleficence of A “DRUNK”…. One need not serve in office to deceive and steal
Bubba & Progeny of the Walrus
Guest Columnist: Tiddal McStevens

I showed up at the Waste Management Phoenix Open smartly dressed in a Hawaiian shirt and tassel loafers; the décor of choice for the sporting press.

Need a Fix?
Walli F. Leff

Experienced “Master Fixers,” ... will help anybody repair a broken object or turn it into something else, including art
The Beatles - The Week - The Legacy
James Campion

The Beatles were a moving pop sculpture, a walking billboard of patent waves and cheeky smiles; on stage the rhythmic bouncing and bobbing of heads and the choreographed bows became inseparable from the music.

The Duke
John P Brady

I met a girl in a bar the usual way, whatever the hell that is, a few days before and we had exchanged numbers.
Love Honeys
Dean Borok

Now that Canada’s Supreme Court has struck down all that country’s prostitution laws, it is only a matter of time...
Buying India: A solution for our times
Shubhi S

We do not favor Indian products and go for imported goods. Why do we let our money flow outside country?
Ethics in “Modern” Indian society
Schubi S

It is said that do whatever you want to do but be honest. Be honest in doing your work; be honest in every single thing that takes place around you.
Travel for Artist’s Sake

Elisa Korenne

Art of Moving to New Places 
Six years ago, I had the great pleasure and challenge of moving from New York City - to New York Mills, Minnesota, a hamlet of 1152 people in rural, west central Minnesota.
Resolved
Roy Valenzuela

My plans are very simple going into the new year but are also culture defying. I'm a trainer, a carpenter, and a writer and between the three I've been able to solidify my financial base ...
Keith Richards at 70
James Campion

It is hard to explain to those who are unfamiliar with the life and exploits of Keith Richards to marvel as I do this week that the man is still breathing
The Art of Preparation
Diane Malk

Like a fireman summoned to the scene, I raced across town to my friends’ house in response to a panicky phone call the night before. Could I help them pack? Gayle and Hal wondered.  
The Last Impression
J S Wright

What will people think of you after you've gone?
1913 - When Electric Cars Ruled The Road
Can they do so again?
Mad About Mad Magazine
John M. Edwards

A Serious Interview with Bill Gaines
John M. Edwards, as a snot-nosed enfant terrible, tries to get a job at his favorite magazine: MAD.
The Gettysburg Address at 150
James Campion

Lincoln’s Oratory Masterpiece Heralded The Modern Age Of America - One-hundred and fifty years ago, Abraham Lincoln presented his address on the hallowed grounds of an American massacre
A Literary Adventure
James Skinner

I came across a small diary in a forgotten desk drawer the other evening - about the time I decided be a writer ...
A future wrecked by divorce
Odimegwu Onwumere

Tom was 4 years old when his parents were divorced in 2012. Ugo did not go to school in the following year due to the degenerating home situation
Santo Che
Dean Borok

I would suggest that the monolithic ascendance of the left developing in Latin America is almost entirely the result of the rise of Internet populism.
Waterloo
Dean Borok

People, as a rule, are not interesting. That’s why they need artists, to make them seem fascinating.
Major League Baseball

Still broken after all these years
James Campion

Major League Baseball continues its over a century of government-sanctioned fraud, racketeering, suspension of civil rights, and illegal business practices this week...
Contextualising Julius Nyerere’s Ujamaa as a liberating political philosophy
Ronald Elly Wanda

The story of Africa in the last century is one characterized by action and response.

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Theology of Science
James Campion

We possess a denial chip in our psyches that obliterates what should be an intrinsic sense that our resources are finite and the abuse of them bear consequences
VOX
James Skinner

Now we have this new centre right party emerging with tsunami strength to challenge many of the right wing policies with their own recipe of management
Vodka With Sochi
Dean Borok

Conditions for the Sochi games couldn’t be more optional. The snowboarding events showed dreamy packed snow and cloudless sunshine that would electrify any skiing enthusiast. It’s as though Putin had found a way to even control the weather.

Prelude to Irrelevance
James Campion

State of the Union Turns into Beginning of the End For President & Congress
That was a weird State of the Union address.
Last Chance Power Drive
Chris Christie: Welcome to Thunderdome
James Campion

...none of this is any good for Chris Christie if he has designs on being president of the United States, or even to continue governing N.J.
Life and Death in Spain
James Skinner

Just before the Spanish Parliament was dissolved it announced a reform of the abortion laws that had been introduced during the Socialist (Zapatero) government.
New York Promises to Be Different
Dean Borok

New York mayor-elect Bill De Blasio is already generating a cottage industry of fear and derision among white ethnic New Yorkers and the sources of media power
Birth of a Cynical Age
James Campion

...no human drama had better crystallized America – its psyche, its message and medium, its resolve and destiny quite so completely and violently as what transpired that overcast autumn afternoon in Dallas, Texas...

Money, Corruption & The Free Thinker Principle - James Campion
This week the Supreme Court further removed the shackles for wealthy donors to contribute as much as they wish for political candidates, building on the momentum of the Citizens United ruling of 2007. The decision was 5-4 right down the line of political ideology
Religious Nonsense & The law
James Campion

Religious freedom is not a free pass to discriminate or ignore laws. This was the point of obliterating the egregious Jim Crow horror show which originated in churches in the South
Crimea: The Russian Problem
James Cameron

Take a moment and thank your preferred deity or talisman that John McCain didn’t become president in 2008. Regardless of what you think of this current model, McCain is certifiably insane with aggression
Indian Economics
Shubhi S.

No matter who forms the government they will undergo a lot of pressure to rectify and bring about some changes in the present economic state of the country
My Friend - The Next Governor of New York?
James Campion

While being a professional colleague of mine for nearly twenty years, during which he has displayed nothing but an enviable commitment to ethics in all forms, Rob Astorino has managed to succeed at the impossible ...
State of the Union

James Skinner on Spain

It will be a test for the present government to see which way the political ideological wind is blowing and how the majority of Spaniards feel about all the hardship that they are still enduring

Rob Astorino Takes The Stage
James Campion

Republican Candidate for Governor of New York On The Road Less Traveled: ...they are looking at a hard road against a political brawler in Andrew Cuomo whose pedigree to personally eviscerate opponents is well documented
No Cure For Stupid
James Campion
+ Readers Responses
It is time we begin to phase out the word racist from our vocabulary. Not expunge it in some social construct like what we so cautiously present as the “N” word now, as if an acronym can lessen its impact...
The Constitution - Spain
James Skinner

The founding members made one mistake. The whole document was buried in solid concrete, bound and gagged never to be altered under any circumstances
Bundy Ranch Solution: Free-For-All in Nevada
James Campion

Right now this scofflaw has been sitting on miles of my land; American taxpayer…I. That’s right. Squatter. Freeloader. Welfare King.
Deport Everyone
Dean Borok

If they’re going to deport people for driving offenses, that’s going to have to include everybody.
Desperate Democrats Lowball Strategy

James Campion

The Paycheck Fairness Act, a desperate attempt at useless legislation that has no chance of becoming law, but will make Republicans, who will certainly piss on it, appear anti-woman

The Great Republican Lie on Abortion
James Campion
+ Readers Responses
if I were a woman in no way, shape or form would I ever support a major political party that stands by the concept of allowing the government to manipulate my insides. Ever.
Moment of Truth in Spain
James Skinner

In or Out - Shake it all about - no winners in chaotic lust for power
- One half, that back the leader Sr. Sanchez are willing to strike a deal with almost everyone on the left ... the other half are dead against.
Playing Statues in Spain
James Skinner
Spain is still immersed in its own political mayhem trying to sort out a new government after the debacle of elections in December of last year.
Madam Shoo-In - The Sequel
James Campion 18.03.16

The Clinton Machine Revs Up

Hillary Rodham Clinton is about to be the first woman to ever lead a major party’s ticket for the presidency in the 240-year history of this republic.
Civil War
James Campion

The Republican Party Vs Citizen Trump
For the first time since 1964, the Republican Party is engaged in an open and hostile coup d'etat against its overwhelming frontrunner for the nomination.
Myth Buster In Chief
James Campion

Donald Trump Reshapes GOP Platform, Takes Down Bush Era Nonsense & Rolls On - A private citizen less than eight months ago has now managed to effectively burn down the entire idea, purpose and foundation of Republican politics.
A Nasty Declaration
James Skinner on the electoral plight of Spain

However often you punch out the numbers, the sums just don’t add up - Sr Rajoy predicts new elections in June as there is no way that the mess, as it is at the moment will be sorted out.
The Scalia Bomb
James Campion

Once the death of ultra-conservative Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia was announced February 13, the wheels of political discourse, the fluidity of the 2016 presidential campaign, and the very core of the United States Constitution was put into play.
Mistah Christie - He Dead
James Campion

Our mostly absentee governor has returned home utterly and completely defeated. His over one-year, suicidal presidential campaign, beginning in scandal with the so-called “Bridge-Gate”, ended with barely whimper ...
Who Can You Trust?
Tom Kilcourse

Why is it that in today’s society there is so much mistrust, of politicians, the media, businesses, you name it?
Explaining Bernie Sanders
James Campion
There was a time, not long ago, that it seemed complete madness to consider a 74 year-old, Jewish, self-described Democratic Socialist, who is not even a member of the Democratic Party, as a serious candidate for president of the United States.The
The Naked Emperor vs The Man Behind the Curtain
James Campion
01.29.16
How Donald Trump’s Political Farce Uncovered Political Farce. Every once and awhile comes an unexpected series of events that transpires, as they did over the past 72 hours, which defies the gravity of our system
A New Decadence
Tom Kilcourse
The politerati in the West have lost their way and are increasingly divorced from their subjects. Everywhere in the western world we see the rising phenomenon of unconventional politicians and political parties, with either Left or Right labels.
Why Donald Trump Must Be The Republican Nominee - James Campion
No new candidate running for president of the United States has dominated the media landscape, the rhetorical space, and, most importantly, the polls the way citizen Donald J. Trump has done, consistently and without waver.
Guns: Money, Politics & Hyperbole
James Campion

a measured approach to increasing background checks and closing gun-show loopholes as a minor step in perhaps toning down the nearly 30,000 gun-related deaths in this country
Democracy at Stake in Spain
James Skinner
Chaos Beckons in Turbulent Spain in 2016
Borrowing Time
Tom Kilcourse
The OBR estimates that by 2020 the household debt to income ratio will reach 163%, that is, by the time of the next general election...
Time to Hold Your Breath in Spain
James Skinner

With recent terrorist attacks in France, Belgium and elsewhere in the world it is only natural that the present Spanish government, similar to the rest of Europe is on a ‘high alert’ mode during the upcoming general election 20.12.15
War Crimes, Genocide, Terrorism
Defining Terror - Antonio Graceffo

In the aftermath of the November, 2015 terrorist attacks on Paris, the internet was ablaze with arguments and opinions, many of which were understandably emotionally charged...
Apres Paris Le Deluge
James Campion
+ Readers Responses
The tragedy in Paris last Friday 13th was horrifying; one might say, terrifying, which is the whole point of terrorism
Cultural Values
Tom Kilcourse
There are many in our society who are sufficiently keen to promote what they call ‘universal values’ that they play down or ignore features of our culture.
The Revolution is Televised
James Campion

Conflict In The Republican Party Fuels Presidential Campaigns - Priebus is facing a full-out revolt, not just ideologically, but quite literally...
2015
No Rhyme or Reason
Dean Borok
12.10.15
Just because the Republicans are indulging in their Nineteenth Nervous Breakdown does not mean that the Democrats still do not have time to step on their own dicks and mess up the election.
Syria - A Big Mistake
James Campion

This latest move by the Obama Administration to “shift gears” or “change strategies” in the current bedlam that is Syria is a mistake; check that – a big mistake.
Shootout at OK Corral
Dean Borok

Anybody who takes the intellectual approach to American presidential politics is a non-starter. The elephants' graveyard is littered with the bones of serious policy thinkers
Spain on the Edge
James Skinner
What will stop the break-up of Spain?
American Hegemony
Tom Kilcourse

Since the second world-war corporate America has ruled the economic roost, spreading its influence through globalisation...yet American corporatism is devoid of any national allegiance.
The Sound of the Barrel's Bottom Being Scraped
James Campion

Eleven Hours of Political Theater On Your Dime - whatever the hell this thing was, it was a bust
Yemenis Attempt Peace Talks Geneva
Marwan Asmar 

Yemenis have to put their heads together once and for all and re-establish a state away from violence, confrontation and war.
A House Divided
James Campion + Readers Responses
10.16.15
Who The Hell Wants To Be Speaker of the House? Who wants to be two heartbeats from the president and lord over the making of law and handling a multi-trillion dollar national budget? Who wants to lead the leaderless...?
Syria & The Middle East Either/Or Theory
James Campion

The party will soon be over for ISIS. This half-cocked theological throw-back had a shelf life anyway, and it has certainly gone on longer than most sane people could have predicted. But this is the beginning of the end; the autumn of 2015. Mark it down.
Elections and Democracy in Tanzania: in search of the Mwalimu moral factor
Ronald Elly Wanda

Tanzania has a highly charged general election slated for 25th October 2015, when the country’s 24 million electorate is expected to bless their next ‘Mwalimu’ with votes for a five year mandate.
The Ace Card - Catalonia
James Skinner

Elections have taken place in the autonomous region of Catalonia, the votes have been counted and the end result is a political mess.
Banking
Tom Kilcourse

There was a time, not so long ago, when a British bank had a manager who was integrated into the community that he or she served.
New York Trumps Everybody
Dean Borok

I vote the straight Democratic line. It wouldn’t matter to me if the Democrats put up Pee Wee Herman or Lassie at the top of the ticket, they have got my vote.
Joe Cool Dominating + Readers Responses
James Campion

Don’t Look Now – Barack Obama Is Beating Second-Term Jinx
Life, Right, Halt!
Tom Kilcourse
21.09.15
The rapid and extensive development of social media offers tremendous learning opportunities... sadly the possibilities are not fully exploited.
White Guy Writing About #BlackLivesMatter
James Campion

If I were to say walk down the street in a fairly suburban neighborhood at ten pm, a cop car would not slow down to check me out or stop to ask me where I was going.
A New Twist on Weekly Shooting
James Campion

This is a murder/suicide emblematic of our media-obsessed times. A TV guy shoots other TV people on TV and uses social media to promote it.
Capitalism
Tom Kilcourse

Critics of the present economic system are often called ‘anti-capitalists’, and perhaps socialists or Marxists. Most do not deserve such labels. Capitalism, like socialism, is a generic terspam covering widely varying systems.
Spain Awaits a Crisis - Autumn 2015
James Skinner
We are in the center of a hurricane waiting for the fury of high speed winds to hit as the storm moves away. This is precisely the case of the Spanish political arena at this moment in time.
Evaluating Conspiracy Media for Reliability
Antonio Graceffo

Conspiracy theories have always existed in America, but they have gained popularity since 9/11 ...
Media, Money & Donald Trump
James Campion

For a political junkie, the Donald Trump Show is a welcomed distraction; especially the stuff about how he has made a living off purchasing the system and how it is a sham
Planned Parenthood
James Campion

'What needs to be pointed out is this gnawing penchant for political activists – both on the Left and the Right (this time it is the Right) to go off half-cocked and just make shit up to support its agenda.'
Send in the Clowns
James Skinner on politics in Spain

Weed legal, Salvadore Dali banned. Welcome to the new radical Spain
Educashun!
Tom Kilcourse

a philosophical shift that took place in British teacher training in the nineteen-sixties when new ‘learning theories’ were swallowed whole by teacher training colleges
Watch Your Words
Tom Kilcourse

I have no special interests in semantics, but when the definition of a word becomes sufficiently loose to affect decision making and cause general confusion it is time to clarify its meaning. The word I have in mind is ‘economy’.
The Iran Deal & the Secret War on ISIS
James Campion

Let me be the first journalist or pundit or columnist or politician or radio host or prime minister to admit I have not read the entire Iran Deal.
Europe and Greece
Tom Kilcourse

Democracy under threat in humiliated Greece? If the European heads, particularly the Germans, feel in any way triumphant, I suggest that they reflect ..Equality ... Of Course
James Campion
+ Readers Responses
Let it be so marked that on June 26, 2015, 239 years after declaring the right to be free and sovereign to pursue life’s ambitions under the law, and not some theocratic monarchy, that we have once again embraced our truest nature as a nation...
Al Andalus
James Skinner

Spain Vulnerable in ISIS Geo-Political Aim. All you have to do is take a look at the geographical snapshot of the North of Africa and the ‘view from above’ is more than frightening
Progress?
Tom Kilcourse

Britain requires a strategy that encourages greater investment in productivity, but the omens do not appear favourable.
Flags are Bullshit
James Campion

Or An Ornery Stroll Down Our Useless, Pathetic Clinging To Symbols
Welcome (Back) to the Jungle
James Campion

Our antiwar president is slowly being dragged into a giant mess we’ve already made of Iraq with the kind of “cautious” speak we’ve heard for a century around here
Goodbye Patriot Act
James Campion
Hello USA Freedom Act

the odious unconstitutional boondoggle passed into law during the über paranoia of 9/11 and renewed time and again for 14 long years is gone ...
Crying Wolf?
James Skinner
As Podemos surges - Spain is on the Venezuelan path to ruin
Elizabeth Warren Unleashed
James Campion

Elizabeth Warren is what makes writing about politics interesting. She is the Democrats answer to Ted Cruz. She represents the polar end of a national party and can and will make waves to muck up the works when she can.
Fight Night
Dean Borok
The Fight of the Century blah blah blah… Most sportswriters never played sports and they can’t write either. Like entertainment writers – they can’t sing so how are they supposed to know enough to write about it?
Baltimore is Burning + Readers Responses
James Campion

At some point cops will stop killing black guys and black neighborhoods will stop ending up in flames. Not sure when that will be; maybe when my daughter (now seven) will be around to see it. Hard to tell ...
Musical Chairs in Spain
James Skinner

The circus acts have already started... rest assured it is going to be exciting, especially as the present government are losing ground due to mounting corruption scandals
Iran: So Far Away
James Campion

Here’s hoping that a deal can be nailed down with Iran over its nuclear capabilities. Not sure what that deal would be or how it would eventually be stricken, but it is the best course of action now.
Madam Shoo-In Part 11
James Campion

Ms. Rodham’s Déjà vu Trail Begins Again - People assumed it, had faith in its coming, and now that it has come, you kind of have to observe it as sort of news
Reflection or Reflexion
Tom Kilcourse
During the election campaign in the UK I am increasingly struck by the behaviour of those charged with choosing a government: the electorate... the ignorance revealed is quite astonishing.
Middle East Blood Juggle
James Campion

or How To Hold Onto A Fistful of Rain & Not Have Too Many People Killed
A Black and White Issue
Tom Kilcourse

...many years of being subjected to anti-racist rhetoric has affected the behaviour of the white population in Britain.
Capitalism’s Slow Suicide
Tom Kilcourse

In seeing people as a cost to be avoided or reduced whenever possible, we forget that they are also consumers
The Equality of Hate
James Campion

Or The Delicate Balance of Us - bigotry, in any way, shape or form is never going away ...
Where There Is No There...There
James Campion

The Perfect Political Storm Rolls In and Out of Washington - political melodrama that means less than nothing beyond the massive egos involved
The Importance of Process
Tom Kilcourse

...inflation in a large, but narrow, market is extremely dangerous for the British economy
rebel
A Case for Conflict
Ben Cooke

Whomever says war is wholly bad just doesn't look hard enough
Is Spanish Socialism Dying?
James Skinner

What is causing this strange political cauldron that is liable to endanger not only the Eurozone but the whole of the European Union?
A Philosophical Error
Tom Kilcourse

The European Union’s crisis with Greece symbolises a fundamental philosophical error in modern thinking, the intellectual dislocation of three symbiotic areas: society, politics and economics.
The Anthropology of The Middle Class
James Campion
A Disjointed Primer from the Front
Here’s the deal: There are too many humans on this planet. Way too many. Before we get into this little dissection of the failing middle class in this country, it is important to get that major flaw out of the way.
The Scourge of Brian Williams...
James Campion + Readers Responses

It is important to reiterate an obvious dictum: What is done here weekly hardly represents even the slightest hint of journalism. Yet, somehow I consider myself a journalist.
Democratic Compromise
Tom Kilcourse

Democratic society is a collaborative institution in which each is enabled to express individuality by surrendering to mutually agreed constraints
Economic Turnaround in Spain
James Skinner
Last year’s macro-economic results have come through and there is no doubt that a positive turnaround has occurred.
Super Taint
James Campion
+ Readers Responses
New England Patriots Befoul Super Bowl Again
114th Congress
Welcome to the Jungle
James Campion

And so the right to govern is upon the Republican Party, which has bitched for six years that it was the minority, throwing stones at the systemic glass house
Thatcher’s Legacy
Tom Kilcourse

The roots our our discontent
Free Speech
Tom Kilcourse
There is enormous irony and not a little hypocrisy to be found in the reaction to the massacre in Paris of the staff of Charlie Hebdo, the satirical magazine.
JE SUIS CHARLIE
A Call For Satirical Jihad
James Campion

Another year, another attempt by violent religious idiots to stem the tide of human evolution
Rudderless Britain
Tom Kilcourse
In 2015 we British will be asked to elect a new government that will be responsible for leading the country until 2020. The pre-election bun-fight has begun already
Little Nicolas and more

James Skinner on Spain

More corruption cases at all levels of public entities continue to surface on practically a daily basis...
VIVA La Cuba!

James Campion

It is important to point out that this “normalizing” of relations with Cuba is a long way from lifting the 50-plus-year useless embargo on the Castro regime, which is still an oppressive communist construct
Conveniently Invisible America
James Campion

Our National Apathy Over Dirty Little Secrets
Through five administrations representing both parties, the CIA literally ran amok ...
Does Size Matter?

Tom Kilcourse

There is much being said presently about the British government’s deficit, with excuses flying between political parties, and everyone promising to reduce it
2014
Fear of a Barrack Planet
James Campion + Readers Responses 11.14.14
The Fallout of The 2014 Mid-Term Elections
McConnell is very old. Not sure how old, but likely not able to quickly get through a supermarket line quickly or maneuver a car in city traffic without causing some delays. He speaks as if someone has a gun to his head in a spy film...
Immigration & Globalisation
Tom Kilcourse
Immigration is much in the news of late, largely because of David Cameron’s panic response to the rise of UKIP. Most of the discussion on immigration ignores the context in which immigration takes place...
New Jersey: Home Office Tryanny
James Campion

Governor Chris Christie and his partner in crime, Governor Mario Cuomo in neighboring New York... stood in front of the citizens of their respective states and stripped them all of their civil rights.
Spain's Watergate
James Skinner
Corruption in Spain has taken on a new dimension that could threaten the government.
Final Observations - One Week Out - James Campion
A Caffeinated Political Notebook
If voting made any difference they wouldn’t let us do it.- Mark Twain
Too Little Too Late?
Tom Kilcourse
It is remarkable, and amusing, to see the leaders of the two largest parties suddenly pronouncing on the need to control immigration: two parties that have ruled Britain since Adam was a lad, or so it seems.
Rob Astorino Unplugged Parts 1 & 2
James Campion
A Candid Discussion with the Republican Candidate for Governor of New York
Catalonia’s defiance
James Skinner
Today’s new generations definitely believe that they are not part of Spain and should therefore be given the freedom to choose their future.
The Gates of Hell
Dean Borok
Ferguson MO is the story that Tom Wolfe wishes he could have written for “The Bonfire of the Vanities”
By George!
Tom Kilcourse

On Friday, 3rd October, George Osborne made a speech to the Institute of Directors in which he accused the Labour Party, trades unions, the Eurozone, UKIP and charities of being anti-business.
Obamawar + Readers Letters
James Campion

Okay, now the anti-war president is at war. This makes sense. Sure it does.
Where is Saudi Arabia? Where is Jordan? Where is Turkey?
MacMuffins
Dean Borok

One is compelled to wonder, what is the role of France in the Scottish separatist movement?
Thank you Alex
Tom Kilcourse

As Alex Salmond resigns, following defeat in the referendum, we English perhaps owe him a vote of thanks for shaking the tree of the oligarchy that rules us.
Here We Go Again
James Campion

Iraq 2003 to 2014 - No Plan, No Dice
Hung by our own words
The NFL Question
James Campion on Ray Rice

...no one has explained why seeing a man punch a woman is more serious than having him merely admit to it
Gibraltar Again
James Skinner

With all the problems that have sprung up around the world in recent months, the Spanish Government has nothing better to do than to start yet another riff raff with Britain over Gibraltar.
Markets & Democracy
Tom Kilcourse
What does ‘free market’ mean? Use of the term reminded me of protests by economics undergraduates some time ago against the narrowness of their curriculum.
The Effects of Social Conditioning
Tom Kilcourse

When, on the BBC radio’s Today Programme, broadcaster John Humphrys introduced an item on the Rotherham rapes scandal by asking ‘How can this happen? How can it be?’ I felt the question had the ring of disingenuousness, or simply naivety.
St. Louis Blues
Dean Borok
Ferguson MO is a fascinating control group for anybody interested in speculating how far American attitudes have progressed during the last 150 years.
The Middle Ground
Tom Kilcourse
The first step on the road to political perdition in Britain was taken when someone discovered a land known as the middle ground
Fearguson, USA

James Campion
+ Readers Responses
Ferguson is a city of around 21,000 citizens in St. Louis County, Missouri. For nearly two weeks now it has been the focal point of the nation, as the shooting death of an unarmed African-American man by a Caucasian police officer has sparked debate, protest, riots, armed guards, and, well…you know the routine.
The Sultan Democrat 
Marwan Asmar 

Erogan's win was never in doubt. However, many fear he will become a dictator and adopt repressive measures on anyone who will oppose his rule, something which he is at pains to deny
Contemplating Gaza
James Campion

“No, I don’t think peace is possible there, not even a tenuous one that appears to be the norm for most of this planet.”
The Seeds of Reality Check
James Campion
This was my introduction to American politics; murder and crime.
Where Now for Spain? - All Change
James Skinner

Most Spaniards, those that can still afford it, are packing their bags and heading for the beaches. But stroll through the streets of any town and you will still see beggars outside most churches and baker shops.
The Age of Political Inertia
James Campion

or How A Humanitarian Crisis Sheds Greater Light on Washington Dysfunction - Everything has now become so political that it has crippled the government to work together to solve even an obviously open/shut case
British Liberalism
Tom Kilcourse

I wonder how J S Mill, and Dickens, would regard the society that they originally inspired. Would Mill approve of what today passes for liberalism?
Issues about Community
Tom Kilcourse

It appears now that some people have had second thoughts on multiculturism. ‘We were wrong : all cultures are not equal’
Civil Rights Act at 50
James Campion

Thirteen years before the United States of America was plunged into a long and bloody Civil War from which over 600,000 would be slaughtered beneath the nation’s original sin, Fredrick Douglas poured from his heart the core of patriotism
World Cup Madness
Dean Borok

Tthe World Cup is as much a cultural event as a sporting tournament, where the world’s national social and geopolitical rivalries are played out in a relatively civilized setting
King Felipe V1
James Skinner

It has been quite a hectic month for Spain, the most important news was the abdication of King Juan Carlos I after forty-nine years and the crowning of his son as the new king of Spain, King Felipe VI
In Praise of Freedom of Speech
James Campion

Ignoring the glaring hypocrisy of the ruling this week, the Supreme Court unanimously upheld the First Amendment by striking down a 2007 Massachusetts law that created a 35-foot buffer zone around family planning centers.
Ebola Virus: How Prepared Is Nigeria?
Odimegwu Onwumere

Disease claims 338 lives in Africa so far this year
Time Warp by James Campion
The Never-Ending Crapshoot That Is Iraq

I leave the country for seven days and end up in a time warp? Or did I misread this latest madness on getting “involved” with Iraq again, as if that is an option
Rwanda & Burundi:

Twins in Central Africa
Fergus Simpson

Over the last two decades, these twins of Central Africa have begun to go their separate ways...
When to Use the ‘G’ Word
Fergus Simpson

In the Central African Republic (CAR), a society long depressed in poverty... is convulsing: belching out chunks of unprocessed sectarian hate.
Murder on a Bridge
James Skinner in Spain

I was going to start this month’s review on a violent political murder of Isabel Carrasco that took place in the city of Leon. It shook the nation
VA Scandal:Our Legacy, Our Sin + Readers Letters
James Campion

Over two administrations now, both Republican and Democrat, there have been revelations of egregious treatment of veterans by our system



Lifestyles 1
1999-2001
Lifestyles 3
2003-2007
Lifestyle 4
2008-2010

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