Friday, October 31, 2008


Above Pictures: Rafael Nadal in Round 3
Rafael Nadal d Gael Monfils October 30, 2008
Photo credits: Watermarked Abaca Press


Pictures in slideshow: Rafael Nadal in Round 3
Rafael Nadal d Gael Monfils October 30, 2008
Photo credits: Mary from The Forum www.rafaelnadal.com


Rafael Nadal Quarter Final in Paris October 31, 2008
Rafa withdrew with too much pain in right knee even after taking antiflammatory medication prior to match
with score 6-1
Nikolay Davydenko moves on to Semi-Final match

The photos in the slideshows are not in order because photo bucket wouldn't allow me to rearrange them today.

Photo credits: Getty, Mary of The Forum at www.rafaelnadal.com, ATP website and unknown

Rafa also was scheduled to play doubles after the single match today. But his injury didn't permit that match to be played.


Rafa with the press following withdrawing from quarter final match with right knee injury
Uploaded by RafaNadalLive

This is from Rafael Nadal's website ~ www.rafaelnadal.com ~ home page

NOVEMBER 01 | 2008


Friday, October 31st

Rafa Nadal's participation in the Paris Masters has come to an end after the world number one retired with a knee injury in his Paris Masters quarter-final against Russian Nikolay Davydenko.

The tournament trainer massaged Rafa's right knee and thigh at the change of ends when he was 4-1 down. Sadly, the massage didn't really do much for him and he was forced to make sad decision after losing the first set 6-1.

¨I have some pain on my right knee. I had it already when the tournament started, but yesterday it got worse and had more pain¨

"Today when I woke up I felt it a lot. I tried to practice but I was in pain. I went to the doctor and the he gave me some antiinflammatories"

"I didn't have power in the right leg to play the backhand. When I push with the right leg i never felt well the knee. The pain I feel is an acute pain. I couldn't play like this. I am never going to win a match like this, right?'

"I feel sorry for the tournament, for sure. For everyone it's tough to lose and for a tournament to have both me and Federer retire is not good news. I know it is not easy for the tournament but we tried our best all the time and we tried our best in every tournament we go to."

"You know how tough is the season and how long, a lot of the matches under our belt. I think the ATP and everybody will have to think about these things and analyze what's happening at the end of every season. Like this it's very difficult to have big players for a long time. For the last four years I was fine. Hopefully it will be also like this this year."

Rafa will undergo some tests in the next couple of days and in principle will be traveling to Shanghai on Tuesday, arriving on Wednesday. It will all depend on the results of these tests. He might delay his arrival to Thursday. We will keep you posted. End of borrowed text

My thoughts on the booing of Rafael Nadal as he walked off the court with his injury today:

No excuses for bad behavior.

If you care more about the game of tennis than the player(s),
then you would watch number 500 play number 501 with the same interest
as Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and the other top players. If a person comes to a match that Rafa is playing, then you come to see Rafa.

To boo or whistle at a player with a prohibitive injury is wrong. There is no rationale that makes it acceptable. If you care about a sport or a player, you would be concerned. Not behave like narcissists.

We have people with bad behavior in every country. I am sure there were plenty of people there who care about Rafa and want only that his injury is not serious.

It was sad to see, though. Very low point to see human beings behave like fools.

I saw the whole medical time-out on the ATP live online and heard the English being spoken by Rafa and the physio men. Rafa had taken medication that morning for the pain and they could offer Rafa nothing more. I believe it is Rafa's knee as he was pointing to it. The man who gave Rafa a massage told the chair umpire that Rafa was ready to stop immediately so the umpire should give him a time-out for the massage to see if Rafa would continue to play.

Only have concern for Rafa and his health. He gives so much. Rafa doesn't owe anyone his health.

With family and friends, Rafa will get the love he needs. Too bad a number of the fans had to add insult to injury.

I like many of Rafa's fans will stand by Rafa through the glory and beyond.

A Tribute to Rafa at Bercy
Uploaded by iteclem51

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Thursday, October 30, 2008





I am not supposed to be here. I am supposed to be where anyone should be at midnight who is not working at a job. But just as I was trying to wind down my internet obsession, I went over to what has become a "must" website for me ~ Watching America - News

I found this article and had to post it.

Die Welt, Germany

Osama Obama

By Philipp Neumann, Political Editor

But then what really stunned me were the arguments Carl and his three companions brought out against Obama.

Translated By Ron Argentati

28 October 2008

Germany - Die Welt - Original Article (German)

What some McCain fans say about the Democratic presidential candidate.

“Where are you from? Germany? That’s really nice! I was stationed there in 1972.” It’s hard to believe how easily one can get into a conversation in the United States, especially when you look as un-American (and as German) as I do. Most people guess it right off the bat. Some have to work their way through Holland or Switzerland before they peg me as German. A few others think I come from England – something really astounding considering my accent – but maybe it’s because I persist in pronouncing the “a” in “can’t” as if it were spelled “cawnt.” But I digress.

Such small talk is always nice, even if you don’t learn much about your partner. The subject of politics is generally avoided in small talk. At least that’s what I thought until I had my first political discussion last night in a restaurant. As usual, it began innocently. The two elderly couples and I exchanged glances, then came the “Where froms?” and then the “Where tos?” followed by a few sightseeing tips around New York City. And then came the question, “What do you think of the presidential election?” I admitted I was for Obama.


One of the husbands, Carl, said they were against Obama. They were for McCain and asked whether I had thought about why Obama really wanted to be President. “Because he wants the power?” I guessed. “Exactly,” said Carl, “and McCain wants to be President because he wants to serve his country.”

Well, O.K. I don’t really believe anyone who’s looking to get the most powerful political job in the world is driven by pure altruism, but I have to admit there might be something to the idea that there could be other motivating forces besides just the desire for power. There may at least be another basic philosophy, but I don’t really know if that’s true. In Germany, it’s normal for politicians to have always been politicians; they’ve never had any other profession. In the United States, the idea of anyone planning a political career as thoroughly as Obama has is somehow distasteful.

But then what really stunned me were the arguments Carl and his three companions brought out against Obama. He has no character, he’s a Muslim, he hobnobs with terrorists – the whole palette of cheap right-wing propaganda. And besides, they said, Sarah Palin was more intelligent than Obama. Excuse me? I’d had about enough. I finished my beer, signed the credit card receipt and departed the way everyone here departs after some small talk: “Nice meeting you!” Source: http://watchingamerica.com/News/10031/osama-obama/


And this is worth reading

Original Article (German)

Die Welt, Germany
The Unrepresentative
American Election

Surveys show that Democratic contender Barack Obama will likely be elected president. That’s not as certain as some polls indicate, however, because the electoral system in the U.S. wasn’t created to best represent the will of the people. It was created to create the most stable majorities...

Link to this article: watchingamerica.com/News/10131/the-unrepresentative-american-election

I have noticed the few Russian articles that I have read at Watching America are putting the USA and Russia at real odds, today. Russia is not keen on the USA. Anyone remember, not long ago, about the Russia - USA relationship that was called the Cold_War?

It is a wise thing to know what others are writing about the USA...

From Izvestia, Russia

The Dollar Is Being Inflated:
One Day It Will Burst…

By Anna Kaledina

As it turns out, the United States is inflating the demand for its currency and printing the dollars at full speed.

Translated By Irina Tanurcov

October 28, 2008

Link to the article listen-if-the-dollar-is-being-inflated-one-day-it-will-burst

And then there is this from

Die Zeit
, Germany

That's Not What We Intended

the following is a portion of the article:

From Paul Wolfowitz to Richard Perle: How the American architects of the Iraq war explain their failure.

...Over lunch at the Bombay Club, Paul Wolfowitz, the Pentagon’s number two man at the time, begins with a surprising admission: “Contrary to what you read everywhere, I wasn’t the mastermind, the string-puller.” Richard Perle, known as the “Prince of Darkness” to opponents of re-armament in the eighties and who works today at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, says much the same thing: “We three had the least to say; Rummy (Rumsfeld) made all the decisions. We didn’t have any real influence, although I wanted it very much. He usually ignored our advice. Doug (Feith) had no operative power. I saw Rumsfeld perhaps only three or four times outside the Defense Policy Board.” The Defense Policy Board was an advisory forum where Rumsfeld appeared every six months...

...Surprise number two: The original objective wasn’t regime change and democracy. Regime change was “the result, and not the object of the war,” – although Wolfowitz himself believed whole-heartedly in the benefits of democracy. “Just think of democratic Poland, with its totally changed, western-oriented policies.”

...Why did it go so badly? Wolfowitz: “We didn’t know our enemy. Saddam had already been planning a revolt for two years. We had no idea of the internal infighting that would be stirred up.” Perle recounts another fiasco: “We wanted to be liberators but within five or six months we became occupiers and targets.”

Was it a war to bring democracy to Iraq in the sense recounted by the eminent scholar Bernard Lewis? In truth, no. A distressed Feith writes in his book “War and Decision” that democracy “required Iraqi leadership, and there weren’t enough Iraqis with experience in democratic practice.” And so? It would be “naïve to think that democracy would have taken hold if we had just left Iraq alone.”

And, as misfortune would have it, the country really wasn’t left alone. Enter L. Paul (Jerry) Bremer in the role of Viceroy after Donald Rumsfeld called him out of retirement in Vermont. Bremer is no Lawrence of Arabia and proceeded with Plan F, which was to solve all the problems by dissolving the military and all the political parties. With that decision, the United States was transformed from liberator to conqueror. “We had the best intentions,” Richard Perle recalls, but under Bremer, the United States treated the Iraqis with “condescension and contempt.” The United States “was suddenly responsible for everything,” but without the expertise it needed. “All at once, 8,000 Americans had occupied one of Saddam’s former palaces in the Green Zone and half of them had never been in a foreign country before.”

Why did the plundering begin so early? The mind-boggling answer: “Tommy Franks (the top military commander) claimed he wasn’t responsible for internal security.” Perle’s conclusion: “I never thought we would botch it so badly.” And on the subject of democratization he added: “That wasn’t our main objective. If Saddam had brought out every bit of information he had on his WMD on the evening of the invasion, the whole war would have been called off. We were one hundred percent certain that Saddam had hidden all the stuff.”

So does the Iraq war shrink down to a saga of incompetence and ignorance? No other result than blood, tears and a big bill? $600 billion spent and 4,500 dead Americans so far? David Frum, coiner of the label “axis of evil” and member of the American Enterprise Institute, takes a protective stance with his colleagues: “Bush and Cheney really believed Saddam had WMD.” When asked why nobody bothered questioning this belief, Frum rages, “Do you know what would have happened if anyone had opposed him in February 2003 by saying ‘Mr. President, we’re not prepared to act. Please consider what will happen if anything goes wrong?’ He would have gone crazy and screamed, “I already told you we’re going in March!” That’s the way it was.

But the irony, Frum adds, is that “Iraq will become a stable, pro-Western country, it will return to the oil markets and it will play a positive role in the Middle East.” On the other hand, the war in Afghanistan, the one everyone called the one worth fighting, isn’t going well at all. Even if Frum wants to maintain he was right, it was an extravagant project that, despite all the talk in Washington, still has no clear meaning.

But why? An old Bush insider who absolutely refuses to be identified answers with the biggest surprise of all: “It was an act of imperial ego-boosting. We had to do something because we had been humiliated on September 11th and made into a laughing stock. We had to show our determination and power.” Would you do it all over again? The answer: “You would have to be crazy to do it again.”


Another story found at Watching America

Impoverished Americans Lean Toward Spoiled Food

Some of our best journalism in the USA is done by foreign journalists. They aren't pandering to our entertainment level of news so much as the USA media.

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ONE LOVE ~ from the movie Playing For Change - Peace Through Music
Uploaded by ax12nm



Dear Person of Conscience,

I voted today - because I am volunteering as a poll watcher on election day. I voted to end the genocide of the Darfuri families. Will you also vote to end the genocide? Please consider this request by the Genocide Intervention Network:

Be A Voice For Darfur!

GI-NET is asking you to be a voice for Darfur. Both presidential candidates pledged ‘unstinting resolve' in ending the Darfur genocide. To ensure that the new president makes Darfur a Day One priority, we are asking you to help us deliver one million postcards to his office by January 20th.

Be a voice for Darfur today. To help us reach our goal of one million, sign the online postcard or order yours today for FREE. We will ship them to your door! Simply collect the signed postcards and put them in the mail and they will be added to the number that will be presented to the new president.

Forward to a friend


The following article links are from my SaveDarfur email that came today:

Daily News: Thursday, October 30, 2008
Agence France-Presse: UN peacekeeper killed in Darfur attack. Gunmen killed a South African peacekeeper with the UN-led mission in Sudan's Darfur region and seriously wounded a female soldier in the second deadly ambush against the under-equipped force in weeks. Wednesday's shooting brings to 11 the number of peacekeepers for the African Union-United Nations (UNAMID) force to have died since the mission launched operations on December 31, spokesman Noureddine Mezni said. Attackers opened fire on the two South African soldiers about a kilometre (half a mile) from a military base for the mission in northern Darfur. "Unknown armed men opened fire yesterday afternoon at a water point near UNAMID camp in Kutum. They were evacuated to our base in Kutum. The man died and the female soldier is still alive," Mezni told AFP.

Associated Press: Sudanese president tries to improve image. Facing genocide charges from an international tribunal, Sudan's president has taken several steps recently to shore up his image. But some say the gestures are "too little, too late." President Omar Al-Bashir's latest moves include holding a high-profile Darfur peace conference -- which his opponents called a farce -- and speeding up deployment of international peacekeepers in Darfur. He also arrested an Arab militia leader charged with war crimes by the International Criminal Court -- the same court that charged al-Bashir with genocide in Darfur. The government says the militia leader will be tried in a domestic court, but hasn't set a date or outlined the charges. Many are dubious that al-Bashir's moves are more than an attempt to head off an ICC arrest warrant.

Newsweek: Piercing the Silence. Too often, atrocities blur into abstractions. The burned-out villages; the camps for the desperate displaced; the brutalized women--for all that we've seen, read and heard about Darfur, for all the celebrities who've adopted it as their own cause clbre, it's still hard for us to get a real sense of the hideousness that has taken place there. Halima Bashir might be the person who finally pulls us through that barrier.

Reuters: China sends officials to handle Sudan hostage crisis. China sent a team of officials to Sudan on Thursday to seek the release of kidnapped oil workers in the disputed aftermath of rescue efforts after four Chinese hostages were killed. Officials from the Foreign Ministry, Commerce Ministry and China National Petroleum Corpn (CNPC) left Beijing to "negotiate with the Sudanese side on all-out efforts and measures of rescuing a worker still missing," Xinhua news agency reported. The Foreign Ministry said two were still missing. The move appeared to be an attempt to bolster control of a standoff that went badly wrong on Monday, when the four kidnapped Chinese oil workers died in a clash between their captors and Sudanese forces. The killings and confusion have cast a shadow over Beijing's ties with the oil-producing African country, where China is a key investor and supplier of arms.


BE INSPIRED: We Have Everything We Need For Peace

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people could change the world.
Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."
Margaret Mead



More at

This is from Mia Farrow's website:

A third IDP camp being attacked by Janjaweed

This email came from an NGO working in Darfur

"As I write this, Kassab camp (North Darfur), home to 25,000 unarmed civilians and the location of DPDO's women's center, is under attack by Janjaweed forces. Rebel forces are too distant and under-equipped to defend Kassab. UNAMID has only a small presence there. Who will be dead tomorrow?"

Click here to see horrifying pictures of the victims of the slaughter, in August, of the residents at Kalma camp. Yet another camp, Zamzam, was attacked in September. But be warned, these pictures are extremely graphic and NOT for young children.

My friend Nicholas Kristof, who also received this same email, writes
"Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir tends to be at his worst when the world is distracted. These days the U.S. is absorbed by the presidential election, Darfur fatigue has set in, and so he evidently feels a little freedom. So we're seeing attacks on camps of displaced people, where Darfuris have sought protection and assistance after fleeing their villages.

"People often ask me if I find it impossibly depressing to go to Darfur and talk to the victims there. Yes, sometimes. But I find it just as depressing that five years into a genocide, the international community mumbles homilies about human rights and 'never again' even as camps like this are attacked without the world even noticing."



Genocide is Control By Death


US accuses Sudan of duplicity in Darfur

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - Sudan has violated an embargo on arms transfers to its war-torn Darfur region and disguised planes to look like U.N. humanitarian aircraft, the U.S. envoy to the United Nations said on Tuesday. Speaking at a meeting of the U.N. Security Council on Darfur, U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad accused Khartoum of a litany of duplicitous actions, all of which he said had been documented by an expert panel of the U.N. Sanctions Committee. They included "violating the limited arms embargo on Darfur, using aircraft painted to resemble U.N. humanitarian aircraft, (and) conducting offensive overflights in Darfur."
He also accused Sudan of "not accepting that there is no impunity for war crimes and crimes against humanity" -- a reference to Khartoum's refusal to hand over two men indicted by the International Criminal Court for mass murder in Darfur.

The U.N. under-secretary-general for field support, Susana Malcorra, told the council that her new targets assumed that 60 percent of UNAMID's full mandated strength of 26,000 would be deployed by the year's end.Malcorra said a previous U.N. goal of 80 percent of full UNAMID deployment by the end of this year had been unrealistic. That would be reached by the end of March 2009, she said. "These new revised targets reflect a scaling back of initial extremely ambitious projections," she said. "The new targets are still ambitious but in our view can be achieved."

The United States complained for months about the slow deployment, blaming it on Sudanese obstructionism and U.N. bureaucracy. But Washington's special envoy to Sudan Richard Williamson told Reuters he welcomed the revised targets.
"We're encouraged that we should have at least 3,600 more UNAMID troops in Darfur by the end of this year," he said.

U.N. officials have dismissed suggestions that they have moved slowly with the deployment of UNAMID, which was created in July 2007. They accuse troop-contributing countries of not providing badly needed military hardware like helicopters.
The council also discussed U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's new report on UNAMID, in which he says up to 300,000 people have been forced to flee violence in Darfur this year.

According to U.N. estimates, a recent increase in violence in North Darfur alone has displaced at least 40,000 people.

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Rafael Nadal - TIME magazine photoshoot
Uploaded by RafaNadalLive


Highlights of Round 3 Rafael Nadal d Gael Monfils in Paris October 30, 2008
Uploaded by superpj2

Round 3 Rafael Nadal defeats Gael Monfils ~ BNP Paribas Masters
Uploaded by lacamisa


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This is for you

Round 2 in Paris
Photo credit: I think this is Getty but not sure

Photo credit: Abaca Press

Round 2 statistics
Thanks to Mary from The Forum at www.rafaelnadal.com
for the above screen caps

Rafael Nadal and Juan Monaco Doubles Partners

Rafael Nadal plays singles and doubles Friday, October 31, 2008

Rafael Nadal v Nikolay Davydenko
Start time approximately at 10:00 a.m. USA EST
This match begins after the match: Andy Murray v David Nalbandian

Rafael Nadal and Juan Monaco v Jeff Coetzee and Wesley Moodie
12:45 p.m. USA EST

More on the schedule:

Friday singles schedule (France time listed here):
14:00 Andy Murray v David Nalbandian
Fb Rafael Nadal v Nikolay Davydenko
19:45 James Blake v Roger Federer
Fb Andy Roddick v Jo-Wilfried Tsonga

Friday doubles schedule
Rafael Nadal and Juan Monaco v Jeff Coetzee and Wesley Moodie
Rafa's doubles match follows another doubles match which begins at 16:45 (France time)
So Rafa will play approximately at 18:45, which would be 12:45 p.m. USA EST

Confused? I know it took me a long time to decipher this.
I hope I got it right.

Rafael Nadal defeated Florent Serra 6-2, 6-4, October 29, 2008
Rafael Nadal defeated Gael Monfils 6- 3, 6-2, October 30, 2008

Round 2 Rafael Nadal d Florent Serra 6-2, 6-4 Oct 29, 08
Photo credits: Abaca Press, DPPI Antone Couvercelle, Mary Boo Boo Screen Caps, Hamish Blair/Getty Images Europe and unknown

Please go to
The schedule for more information

works both on MAC anad PC

I paid for the annual ATP tennis site's live streams, but it never wo
rks well for me. So I always end of watching for free at Justin TV. Here is the link: www.atptennis.com

Round 3
Photo credit: Unknown but a good guess is Getty


Round 3 Rafael Nadal d Gael Monfils 6-3, 6-2, Oct 30, 08
Photo credits: Hamish Blair of Getty Images Europe and unknown

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Wednesday, October 29, 2008


My Dear Son,

I was up in the west bedroom looking for a blank book that was still blank and having failed finding one, I opened some of my journals that I have already filled. I came across a couple of things that you wrote to me. And that is what made me want to write to you, now.

You are so very dear to me. In the beginning, I wrote you note after note saying affirmations to you. But now, I want to do the same. You are a very special human being. I am grateful our lives came together. The one letter laying between the pages of my journal, you wrote to me and it is so beautifully honest and real. When I got to the end and read your last sentence, I started to intensely feel the tears well up from deep in my chest and the tears filled my sinuses and tears filled my eyes. These were tears of feeling alive. There are times in life when you feel dead and there are times you feel so real and alive. I feel alive because we have shared our lives. This letter was before high school and although it has no date, it was when I was still in your life mothering you like a mother mothers a son.

I want you to know that I believe in your goodness and your gifts as a special human being. I hope you are having a good day. I love you, sweetheart.

Your Mom

The picture is you of course ~ at the restaurant after the court of your adoption proceeding

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Tuesday, October 28, 2008








Viva Obama 2008
Uploaded by NuevaVista70

English Translation:
To the candidate who is Barack Obama
I sing this corrido with all my soul
He was born humble without pretension
He began in the streets of Chicago
Working to achieve a vision
To protect the working people
And bring us all together in this great nation
Viva Obama! Viva Obama!
Families united and safe and even with a health care plan
Viva Obama! Viva Obama!
A candidate fighting for our nation
It doesn't matter if you're from San Antonio
It doesn't matter if you're from Corpus Christi
From Dallas, from the Valley, from Houston or from El Paso
What matters is that we vote for Obama
Because his struggle is also our struggle, and today we urgently need a change
Let's unite with our great friend
Viva Obama! Viva Obama!
Families united and safe and even with a health care plan
Viva Obama! Viva Obama!
A candidate fighting for our nation

We are voting here in the United States. I am voting this week because I am volunteering to be a poll watcher on election day November 4, 2008. In 2004, I volunteered to work the polls as a clerk. I did this because I was so sure George Bush would not be elected. And I wanted to be a part of John Kerry getting elected and Bush going back home.

There is an HBO movie called Recount which is about the 2000 election when Vice-President Al Gore may very well have won the election, but he gave in too soon and George Bush was put in office by the U.S. Supreme Court.

This movie is being shown repeatedly on cable television now. Website: www.hbo.com/films/recount

There is more on this at the end of this post.

I go to the website Watching America that collects articles from around the world and check on what is being written about the USA Presidential campaigns.

The following article is translated here and originates from Imperiya, Belarus. The only thing I added is in parenthesis below. You may check out this website yourself:

The U.S. One Week
Before November 4th

By V. Batyuk

But many American “Joe the Plumbers” don’t have any desire to understand the intricacies of the candidates’ pre-election programs. Instead, they have hard-core conservative and racial prejudices, which can change the outcome of the 2008 election at the last moment.

Translated By Olga Kerzhner

28 October 2008

Belarus - Imperiya - Original Article (Russian)

One week remains until the presidential election in the United States. According to the polls, Democratic candidate Barack Obama is 9% ahead of his rival, Republican John McCain. Data from Reuters, C-SPAN and Zogby indicates that if the election took place on October 25th, 51% of voters would vote for Obama and 42% for McCain. However, over the past two weeks, the senator from Arizona slightly reduced the gap with the senator from Illinois. Earlier in the month, Obama was ahead of his rival by 14 percentage points.

Be that as it may, only a miracle can still save McCain from defeat on November 4. However, all kinds of miracles can happen during the presidential campaign in the U.S. The Republican candidate can count not only on the resurgence of racist feelings in the white part of the electorate, but above all on the fear of change by millions and millions of Americans.

According to the opinion polls, approximately 70% of Americans are not satisfied with the way President Bush is fulfilling his duties; more than ¾ are dissatisfied with the work of Congress; finally, more than 85% (an unprecedented number!) believe that their country is heading the wrong way. And yet, over 40% of American voters are going to vote for McCain -- the man who (and this is completely clear) will not change anything if he’s in the White House. The reasons for this are his political ideology (while in Senate, McCain supported bills by the Bush administration 90% of the time), and simply his age (he is 72 years old).

The fear of change is caused by the deep conservatism of a substantial part of the American electorate. For the most part, these are white, deeply religious representatives of the middle class, who live in provincial America and don’t have a good education. The extravagant Sarah Palin is not only their candidate, she’s one of them.

Notorious “Joe the Plumber” (Samuel “Joe” Wurzelbacher) from Ohio is the embodiment of the fears and hopes of blue-collar America. Joe plans to open his own businesses, (inserted by me: Joe doesn't plan to open a business - he made that up) but fears that Barack Obama’s economic reform would force him to pay higher taxes. Actually, Obama suggests raising taxes on annual incomes in excess of $250,000 per year, and it’s unlikely that an American plumber (or driver, mechanic, electrician, etc.) would earn such amount. But many American “Joe the Plumbers” don’t have any desire to understand the intricacies of the candidates’ pre-election programs. Instead, they have hard-core conservative and racial prejudices, which can change the outcome of the 2008 election at the last moment. These prejudices have an impact not only on domestic policy, but also on the foreign policy of the U.S. People voting for McCain would like to preserve not only their own welfare, but also the American hegemony in the world. And yet, they only vaguely visualize that world, which they deeply believe that America is called upon to lead.

“There is a deep chasm between the self-perception of Americans and other peoples’ vision of America,” noted V. Krasheninnikova, a Russian scholar. “Most Americans truly aren’t aware of how their foreign policy and all its aspects -- military, political, ideological, cultural, economic -- are perceived by other nations as expansionism, and America itself is seen as a danger rather than a guarantor of peace. While many Americans are convinced that they 'rescued from tyranny' and 'gave freedom' to some people, they are surprised to hear that those people do not want them on their land, and hate America.”

However, people are conservative everywhere and much of the time, and Americans are no exception. Political initiative is created by the elite; it’s the elite who are everywhere and always pushes for and achieves reforms. And the American elite are clearly counting on Obama. Pillars of the American establishment such as newspapers such as The Washington Post and The New York Times have already expressed their support for Obama. The New York Times’ editorial board in particular noted in their story that, “Mr. Obama … has shown a cool head and sound judgment. We believe he has the will and the ability to forge the broad political consensus that is essential to finding solutions to this nation’s problems. At the same time, Senator John McCain of Arizona has retreated farther and farther to the fringe of American politics, running a campaign on partisan division, class warfare and even hints of racism. His policies and worldview are mired in the past.”

In other words, Americas powerful elite do not believe that McCain would be able to lead the country out of the current crisis in America. They’re counting on Obama. This is why an unprecedented number of high-ranking functionaries of the Republican Party expressed their support for the black Democratic senator. The list includes the former Governor of Massachusetts William Weld, former White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan, and former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell.

The American establishment is clearly not satisfied with the views and approaches of the senator from Arizona, not only with respect to domestic and economic issues, but also the problems of U.S. foreign policy. Only recently McCain’s appeals to throw Russia out of the G8 found sympathy among many people in the U.S., and now such ideas are rather irritating. The upcoming G20 summit on November 15th in Washington means that McCain’s idea of the so-called “league of democracies” will be buried forever, without ever being born.

Republican candidate’s limited foreign-policy views have been reflected on his election campaign website. The “National Security” section talks about “Fighting Against Violent Islamic Extremists and Terrorist Tactics,” “Effective Missile Defense,” and “Modernizing the Armed Services.” That’s all. Thus far, McCain has failed to put forward other ideas about reforming U.S. foreign policy.

Obama’s website, by contrast, has an extensive foreign policy section, which elaborates on what policies, if elected, the Democratic President will carry out in the Middle East, Africa, in relation to European allies, Russia and Latin America. Note that Moscow is unlikely to be pleased with Obama’s plans to “[strengthen] the Transatlantic alliance, so that we can deal with Russia with one, unified voice” or “[help] to decrease the dependence of our allies and partners in the region on Russian energy.” It seems that in the White House, Obama would protect U.S. interests far better than McCain.

At the same time, Obama does not exclude dialogue with Russia on issues of mutual interest, “such as countering nuclear proliferation, reducing our nuclear arsenals, expanding trade and investment opportunities, and fighting Al Qaeda and the Taliban.” He suggests, “Keeping the door open to fuller integration into the global system for all states in the region, including Russia.” And generally the senator from Illinois intends to reexamine, “the Bush-Cheney approach to diplomacy that refuses to talk to leaders we don't like. Not talking doesn't make us look tough – it makes us look arrogant… it makes it harder for America to rally international support for our leadership. On challenges ranging from terrorism to disease, nuclear weapons to climate change, we cannot make progress unless we can draw on strong international support.”

Let us emphasize once again that in his foreign policy, Obama will seek to assert American leadership in world politics. At the same time the senator from Illinois has a better understanding of the surrounding world than his colleague -- the senator from Arizona. And that makes Obama a possible (although not a very easy) conversation partner in the future Russian-American dialogue.

Watching America Collection of World Journalists write about the USA election

Direct Links:

Why Obama Strikes a Global Chord Qatar

Obama Deserves to Become President Qatar

Russia Laughs at McCain’s Request for Campaign Money Russia


Bill Maher's opening of Real Time October 24, 2008
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Language may offend

NEW RULES of October 24, 2008
some of this isn't my sense of humor,
but you may check it out and make your own judgment

History Haunts


The U.S. Supreme Court was Wrong
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Five members of the U.S. Supreme Court stopped Florida recounting of votes of the 2000 Presidential election.

Text by Conservativepublican:
Judges that decided the vote for the nation by ceasing all recounts and by are criminals and treasonous against the American democratic process.
William Rehnquist
Anthony Kennedy
Sandra Day O'Connor
Clarence Thomas
Antonin Scalia

Judges that wanted a recount.
John Paul Stevens
David Souter
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Stephen Breyer


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Scene from Recount, where Kevin Spacey and Dennis Leary talk about hanging chads and how they may lose the 2000 election for the Democrats.


Trailer of Recount
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Kevin Spacey of the HBO movie Recount interviewed by Keith Olbermann
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Barack Obama Action Center

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Rafael Nadal defeated Florent Serra 6-2, 6-4
and will play Gael Monfils October 30, 2008 not before 1:45 p.m. USA EST
In Paris that is 7:45 p.m.
I'll have to post pictures of the Round 2 match with Serra in the near future.
Please go to
The schedule for more information

Thursday, October 3o partial schedule:

Court Central
11:00 Juan Martin Del Potro v David Nalbandian
Nb 12:00 Andy Roddick v Gilles Simon
Nb 13:30 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga v Novak Djokovic
Fb Marin Cilic v Roger Federer
Nb 19:45 Rafael Nadal v Gael Monfils
Fb Tomas Berdych v Nikolay Davydenko

Court 1
14:00 Philipp Kohlschreiber v James Blake
Fb Andy Murray v Fernando Verdasco

(Nb=Not Before, Fb=Followed By)

works both on MAC anad PC

I paid for the annual ATP tennis site's live streams, but it never works well for me.
So I always end of watching for free at Justin TV.


Rafael Nadal (ESP) and Juan Monaco (ARG) won doubles 6-2, 6-4 over Nicolas Mahut (FRA) and Paul-Henri Mathieu (FRA) on Tuesday, October 28, 2008

WEDNESDAY October 29, 2008

Rafael Nadal (ESP) and Juan Monaco (ARG) will play Mahesh Bhupathi (IND) and Mark Knowles (BAH)

For more information:
Sign up at The Forum
for much information, articles, pictures, videos and everything about Rafa

The schedule

Pictures of the doubles match in Paris, October 28, 2008
Above photo credits are Getty and unknown

Above two photo credits: Hamish Blair ~ ATP

Rafa training and brief interview
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Wild Wednesday ~ October 28, 2008 - Source: www.bnpparibasmasters.org

It is not often that so many big names play on the same day of a tournament, but that is exactly the treat that is in store for the crowd at the BNP Paribas Masters on Wednesday. With Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Andy Murray, David Nalbandian, Gilles Simon and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga just part of the galaxy of stars hitting the courts, fans will hardly know which way to turn.

Anyone with tickets for Wednesday at the BNP Paribas Masters can consider themselves very lucky indeed. Be it for the day or for the night session, they will be witnessing star-studded tennis at its best. From 11 am until late at night, a panoply of seeds will be battling it out for a third-round berth.

Some of the best will be saved til last, with the No2 and 3 seeds taking part in the night session. At 7.45 pm (CET), Roger Federer will make his grand entrance onto Centre Court to face Robin Söderling, who won last week’s tournament a few hours south of Bercy in Lyon. While the Swiss maestro leads 7-0 in the head-to-head and won a title himself last Sunday – at his home tournament in Basle for the third year in a row – the Swedish indoor specialist will certainly be no pushover.

Another pretender to the BNP Paribas Masters throne will follow Federer onto centre stage – Andy Murray. The Scotsman has very much been the rising star of the second half of the season, winning at Madrid and Saint Petersburg in the last two weeks to go with his title in Cincinnati and US Open final. Facing American Sam Querrey, the world No4 should not be in any danger.

The highlight of the afternoon will be the singles debut of world No1 Rafael Nadal, who according to his coach and uncle Toni Nadal is currently suffering from fatigue (though this was not apparent when he partnered Juan Monaco to doubles victory earlier on Tuesday…). He will face lucky loser Florent Serra – a man whom he has beaten twice this year dropping only five games over five sets in the process. The Frenchman will have the crowd behind him and has vowed to play a more aggressive style of tennis on Wednesday.

The crowd will have other home favourites to fete on Wednesday, with Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (No13) facing wily Czech Radek Stepanek and rising star Gilles Simon (No10) who will take on Russia’s Igor Andreev in a match crucial to the Frenchman’s hopes of making the end-of-season ATP Tennis Masters Cup.

David Ferrer (No5), James Blake (No11) and Stanislas Wawrinka (No12) all hope to squeeze into the top eight and secure a berth for Shanghai and all of them will be playing on No1 court tomorrow. Opening the proceedings back on Centre Court at 11am will be reigning champion David Nalbandian (No8), facing Germany’s Nicolas Kiefer.

Surprises may well be in store on Wednesday but one thing is for certain – there will be some incredible tennis from a host of top names.


October 29, 2008 Wednesday Tennis in Paris

Paris (Paris time ~ 6 hours ahead of USA EST)
Court Central
11:00 David Nalbandian v Nicolas Kiefer
Fb Gilles Simon v Igor Andreev
Fb Rafael Nadal v Florent Serra
Fb Jo-Wilfried Tsonga v Radek Stepanek
Nb 19:45 Robin Soderling v Roger Federer
Fb Andy Murray v Sam Querrey

Court 1
11:00 Marcel Granollers v Marin Cilic
Fb David Ferrer v Philipp Kohlschreiber
Fb Ivan Ljubicic v Nikolay Davydenko
Fb Stanislas Wawrinka v Tomas Berdych
Fb Simone Bolelli v James Blake

(Nb=Not Before, Fb=Followed By)

More on the schedule



Rafael Nadal in L'Equipe during BNP Paribas in Paris Bercy

Rafa Report is in French

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Paris pre-tournment Rafa interview in English

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