Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Two Doses of BS

First, the sports announcer on CBS is saying Jason Garrett allegedly said the Cowboys are the best players in the country. If that were so, wouldn't they be going to the Superbowl? And, I'm well aware the problem is Jerry Jones, but, to me, if each player is THAT good, he could accept a position on a team that Jerry Jones does not own - a team that might actually go to the Superbowl, so blaming JJ doesn't wash.
And 2) I listened to Obama's State of the Union address in which he talked about how great the U.S. economy is because of his administration and yet, today, the Federal Reserve announced they can't at this time raise interest rates because the economy is so poor and, when that was announced, the Dow dropped 200 points.
So, I think both Garrett and Obama are full of BS!

Will families ever see any financial help?

If I were still an investigative newspaper reporter, I would be checking out these "events" in which artists are creating art from the "leftovers" of the Christmas tornadoes in the Dallas, Texas area and are auctioning off or selling the art with the money going to help people who lost their homes.
I don't doubt the artists are collecting trees, limbs, lumber, or whatever, and creating art.
I don't doubt they are offering the items for auction or sale.
I just want to know WHO decides on how the money will be distributed, the names of those families who actually receive the money and how much each family gets.
Often, a generous idea doesn't actually END with financial impact for people. We see this all the time with money the U.S. government sends to some foreign nations - the leader of the country receives the money and sends it on to his/her Swiss bank account, OR huge fundraising events show NOTHING left after all expenses paid, so the people who are supposed to be impacted are NOT (and there is the problem of people emotionally calling in with donations which they never send).
Hopefully, somebody at Dallas Morning News or WFAA or one of the local media institutions will be tracking these art auctions!

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Four Iranian hostages released in trade for Iranians held in U.S.

Of course, it is wonderful news that the four hostages have been released and are on their way to the Army hospital at an American base in Germany. Apparently, two are not in very good health.

The Americans have been exchanged for six Iranians who were being held by the U.S. and awaiting trials for allegedly breaking laws regarding the sanctions on Iran.

The exchange is said to be part of the Nuke deal that was agreed to this past summer. The Nuclear Observers today announced they have completed inspections in Iran and the country is abiding by the agreement. As a result, U.S. Pres. Obama is expected to release $150 Billion to Iran within the next few days.

The longest held hostage has been there over four years, the next over three years.

Amir Hekmati, a former U.S. Marine, was arrested in Aug. 2011 during a visit to see his grandmother. He was charged with espionage and sentenced to death for allegedly being a CIA spy (what the Iranians stated about him).

Seed Abedini, a Christian minisiter, was held for 3.5 years, sentenced to 8 years for gathering with others for Bible studies.

Matthew Trevithick also was released, but separatly from the other four. He was released after 40 days and was there for a four-month intensive language course.

Evin Prison was where they were kept and Americans have said the prison was where horrible things have happened. Once the Americans are home, I'm sure we will learn much more about their treatment.

Another man frieed was Khosravi-Roodsari, but we don't know anything about his at this point.

Robert Levinison, who was 67 years old when captured, was NOT part of the deal. It is not known if he is even still alive.

It is truly wonderful for the four Americans to be released. That said, the Nuclear Agreement is still of major concern to me. This morning from 4 to 6 a.m. I watched a documentary discussion the obsession Muslims have with the West and with Israel. There were many videos of children, including Iranian children, shouting death to America and ranting about how they wanted to murder all Americans. Because of the hatred and indoctrination that goes on in Iran and other Middle Eastern countries (as well as in other parts of the world, but we are discussing IRAN), it is doubtful to me that over time, the Iranians will abide by the agreement. Once they have the money, the sanctions are lifted and they have a little time under their belt, I think they will continue with their development of a nuclear weapon.