It’s the American Economy Stupid! The Four Trees That Tumbled the Forest

Bill Clinton - The Economy, Stupid

Bill Clinton and most of us forgot about «It’s the economy, stupid»

The slogan for Bill Clinton’s campaign in 1992 was “the economy, stupid”. In 2016, the Clintons, Obama, Republicans, Democrats, Anderson Cooper, Brianna Keilar, Chris Wallace, Megyn Kelly and I missed the trees in the forest. This time it wasn’t whether we could see the forest for the trees, but a case when the economic glut hid the individual rot.

Not in a long time has an election in the USA caused so much anxiety outside the USA as the presidential election this fall. In most elections, anywhere in democracies around the globe, the character of Donald J. Trump would have made the candidate unelectable.

There are two key elements to Trump’s victory:

  1. The economic situation
  2. A winnable strategy on how to profit on the situation

In this blog post, the economic situation is scrutinized.

The economic situation in the USA is the essential factor in the race for the presidency. It is very black and white. In 2016, the situation made even a candidate such as Trump electable. The economic situation, or the distribution of wealth, and some psychological aspects surrounding it, created a political Big Bang on November 8th. The result of the US presidential election in 2016 pivoted on four points.

The four trees that tumbled the forest:

  1. The greatness of the USA makes its leaders blind
  2. The American Dream is not attainable for too many Americans
  3. Free International trade has loopholes too favoring for an elite business clique
  4. The communist ghost of the Soviet Union stifles American economic policy discussion

In order to analyze today one has to go back in time. The state of today is the result of events in the past, and the Trump campaign slogan “Make America Great Again” points back in time.

Overall, “Make America Great Again” is a somewhat strange slogan. After all, the USA is the only superpower in the world.

  1. Trump has been talking about a making the US military strong again. According to Vladimir Putin, the US military budget is ten times bigger than the Russian. Maybe Putin is not the most revered source; however, the fighting ability of the USA is without question the strongest by far.
  2. American multi-national corporations (MNC) are dominating world business.
  3. American culture is spread to the tiniest corners of the world.

How much greater can America be?

“The American Dream” is for many Americans as attainable as landing Apollo on star Sirius

Regretfully, for many Americans, the country is not great. “The American Dream” is for many Americans as attainable as landing Apollo on star Sirius. To these constituents, the USA is not the place to be, if you want to progress in life, if you want to triumph economically, or achieve anything great. For too many Americans it has become a mission impossible to break out of the trashy mold.

These people look back on their parents or grandparents America, an American that prospered. After World War II, the USA was firmly established as a superpower. The 1950s rock’n’rolled into the Camelot of the 1960s. One step of Armstrong became a leap for mankind on the Moon. The USA stepped into its decade of bicentennial celebration in the 1970s as an untouchable beacon of the free world. It was the run-in on the ideological battle between the second superpower, communist Soviet, and capitalist USA in the 1980s.

I was a student at Indiana University when Gorbachev called it the day in 1991 for communist Soviet. The ideological battle was won, socialism doesn’t work, and free markets do work. The campus attitude was: Now Russia will do it the American way.

George H. Bush approval rating went through the roof after Desert Storm and General Norman Schwarzkopf blew the Iraqis out of Kuwait in 1991. The first war televised live. Only a year later, Reaganomics was firmly discarded as the economic policy for the USA in the post-Cold War era. Too much less tax and less government hadn’t proved to be the best policy.

The yuppie era had shown that the invisible hand of free markets does not see or solve all economic issues for the common good. Especially, when it can be argued that the invisible hand does not have the society’s best in mind in the first place. There are too many invisible hands exploiting and creating loopholes for individualistic petty purposes at the expense of the general public.

The end of Reaganomics did not end yuppie actions. Bill Clinton’s deregulation of the financial markets arguably led to the financial meltdown in 2007-08. Repealing a stabilizing and conservative law such as the Glass-Steagall Act, amongst others, made it possible to be more creative and reckless in the finance industry. The paper instruments representing core assets of the common people could by consultants be played with in order to amass money on Wall Street at the expense of the peripheral man.

Mount Rushmore

Trade policies hasn’t been as rock solid as Mount Rushmore

The decade of the 1990s towards the new millennium was a prosperous one with a minor dent. Although, the Soviet Union as an ideological adversary was gone, Japan had become an economic adversary. Japan was even challenging the USA on the most American industry of them all, the automobile industry.

In the post-Cold War era all men were pumping the non-military industries. The computer technology became a household industrial efficiency booster, and new markets more accessible through International trade agreements. The North American Free Trade Agreement of 1994 and the European Union of 1993 the most famous examples.

The idea of international trade arrangements like these is to create a free flow of goods and services:

  1. To make production more efficient
  2. Improve living standards for all people
  3. Perhaps most importantly, use trade as a peace making tool among nations

In 2008, Toyota of Japan surpassed General Motors of the USA as the largest automobile manufacturer in the world. GM filed for bankruptcy protection a year later and was bailed out of the crises by a large chunk of government money. How could this happen? The Japanese rise to economic prowess is a study in itself. GM slipped because they got sloppy. They didn’t pay attention to the shifting world demand for automobiles. Instead of putting up a fight on merit and industrial handicraft, they would focus attention on peddling with the government and lure the authorities to set up trade obstacles for the Japanese.

Already in the early 1990s you could experience the devastating decline of the secondary industry in the USA:

  1. The call for short sighted trade protection against the Japanese that in the long run makes you less competitive
  2. The disgruntled out-of-work industrial worker
  3. Corporations fending for their stockholders pockets at any means

The international trade agreements have one big flaw. It hands most of the value decisions to a shrinking number of wealthy business men. Whereas corporations have to deal with common sense regulatory measurements domestically, reciprocal international regulation where the stakes and rewards are higher are not in place. The system favors horizontal integration of goods and services. The free international market place is piling big corporations who can exercise more industrial and tilted power. The common man feels, rightly so, that the system is rigged for the ones that are already doing great.

Whereas corporations have to deal with common sense regulatory measurements domestically, reciprocal international regulation where the stakes and rewards are higher are not in place

So, instead of creating wealth for all, MNC can use the free playground to their own benefit. An American manufacturer of “Make America Great Again” caps can produce them in the country where they can enforce a better deal. One could argue that this is growing pains of a “free of obstacles» international trade. But, this is difficult to explain to lay off workers in democracies and elsewhere.

The number one cause of detrimental societal instability is inequality of wealth. That man is not valued equal vocationally, economically, nor vocally. It is okay that the boss makes more than the worker, but there is a limit on how big this gap can be. It has been proven throughout time, when a small number of people get more and more, and a larger number of people get less and less, the system will burst. Not only economically, but also politically.

In 2016, a huge percentage of the American voters are hurting economically. In a country, where you are supposed to be able to work yourself up, there is no way up. A large number of Americans have not had a ladder to climb for decades. When you work two or three jobs in an abundantly rich country as the USA and cannot send your kids to college something is very wrong.

It is the false “American Dream” nerve Donald Trump has not only detected but also acted upon

The illusion of “The American Dream” has now become a scam to dull people into trashy mediocrity. As if, when you don’t believe in “The American Dream” you may be regarded as unpatriotic. People have been hurting, but haven’t been able to voice it because of the illusory greatness of the USA for too many Americans.

It is the illusory American greatness that has kept the politicians blind to the misery of a too big portion of the constituency. Let alone take appropriate measures to alleviate the frustration. It is the false “American Dream” nerve Donald Trump has not only detected but also acted upon.


The American Dream


And this is where the collapse of the Soviet Union enters the equation: The idea that socialistic solutions or “welfare” do not work, period. The Democratic primaries signaled a paradigm shift in US political debate. For the first time, more sophisticated socialistic solutions were presented to the American people without being ignored. Bernie Sanders introduced an ideological debate to American politics that has been lacking for decades. But “socialism” is still not alternative ideological political thoughts because of the communist Soviet legacy. Investments in the American people are still not as important as any other government investment. Nevertheless, welfare is also investments.

Welfare is also investments

The strength of the American psyche is the belief that you can do it, do it on your own, and be self-sufficient. When the last financial crises hit the world economy almost a decade ago, Norwegians sought the governmental agencies for help. Either have the government help them get a new job, or provide governmental aid. In the US, even out-of-work managers stood in long lines outside business premises to get a job as down-ladder as a cleaner.

This reflexive behavior is part of what makes America great, the micro “solve it on your own” attitude. However, when the problem is macro, people must be open for macro solutions. Statistics shows that small developed countries such as Sweden and the Netherlands, more dependent upon export and trade, have more safety nets for people. They have more social welfare systems. You need this to offset the instability of an export economy.

There is no other business that is more lucrative to a nation than to invest in its people

These countries have realized that investments also mean investing in its most crucial asset, the people. If you spend 12 years on educating kids, you may as well invest two – three years of unemployment benefits or expensive medical treatment. Then the government will cash in later by receiving tax revenue for another 20 years of that person’s payroll activity. And, all people whether they are retired, disabled, or working add value to the society. Basically, there is no other business that is more lucrative to a nation than to invest in its people.

The USA has both an entrepreneurial spirit and very large domestic economy. The USA is less dependent upon export than perhaps any other country. People investment hasn’t been as necessary in America. The free trade movement, accelerated by Ronald Reagan and his followers in the Oval Office, has had the undesired side effect that US based MNCs have taken their production outside the USA, leaving many Americans out of work.

Ronald Reagan

Ronald Reagan (1980-88). Deregulation, less tax, less government

It is illuminating that the first industrial country, the United Kingdom, just voted to leave the sphere of European free trade. UK has been the first great champion of free enterprise. With the election of Trump, it may seem that United Kingdom’s follower as a Superpower and an even greater advocate for free enterprise, the USA, may be the next to abolish free international trade.

It is ironic. These two countries became world economic super powers, in part, because of trade rigged to their benefit. They were first, and in numerous ways had a “de facto” protected status against other competitors. This is a benefit that undeveloped countries do not have in a free market today. Undeveloped countries must very often create production against already existing lines of production. Production lines developed with support mechanism not possible today. Due to international free trade agreements, lesser developed countries are not able to use “unfair” trade practices that could balance the battle field. This rigs the system to the benefit of MNCs even more.

The selfish actions of corporations have left an enormous large number of Americans stuck in a battle they cannot get out off. And without the ability to seek people investment solutions they have been left as trash.

When Hillary Clinton called Trump voters for deplorable, she truly exposed the establishment’s obliviousness

The failure of both the Democratic Party and a normal empathetic Republican Party to win the 2016 election in the USA can in large part be attributed to the lack of understanding that the “American Dream” is not America anymore for a belt of voters. When Hillary Clinton called Trump voters for deplorable, she truly exposed the establishment’s obliviousness.

And it was the subsequent and unavoidable failure to not realize that the unelectable Trump could win on this opportunity.

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Last Minute Warning on Donald J. Trump – Candidate for POTUS

Donald Trump Psychopath

The race for the presidency in the US has been particularly nasty in 2016. For most people it is quite clear that Donald Trump is a narcissist. This is a person that is over the top interested in portraying himself in the best way possible, in any situation. It is a man who loves himself, a person radiating confidence in his own abilities, a winner. It is easy to think highly of such as person, the right person for the most potent job in the world.

A lot of people are hurting, and in a bad spot. Voting for Trump seems a good alternative. It appears to be no down-side to such a great candidate. It cannot be any worse than it is today, trumpudilans believe.

Yes, it can be worse. Donald J Trump has over the course of the campaign showed numerous instances of being a psychopath. If he isn’t a psychopath, he is using psychopathic tactics. And this is alarming. This is category five danger. There is no limit to the damage a psychopath can facilitate.

Experts say that one of every 100 person is psychopathic

A psychopath is not necessarily a person walking around with a knife and butchering people. A psychopath can appear to be normal all day long, except in the moments of truth. These moments of evil may be rare, but are devastating, and difficult to deal with. Experts say that one of every 100 person is psychopathic.

Psychopaths have normal intelligence. They can achieve great things, and they do not appear to be lunatics. Their flaw is lack of empathy. In fact, this deficiency makes them appear calm. When most would crumble being exposed for lying, the psychopath is admirably composed because it doesn’t bother him, or her.

Psychopaths have feelings but are not equipped with sympathy for others. However, whenever they decide to, they can act compassionate. Empathy for a psychopath is what the color red is for a colorblind person.

During the town hall debate Trump exposed his lack of empathy when he resembled a stalker behind the talking Clinton. If Trump had empathy, he would have taken a few steps back when Clinton came over to his corner.

In this blog post you will be reminded of some psychopathic traits, red flags and tactics of Donald Trump. In addition, the different roles Trump is performing. A few words on the people who sits in his corner, the flying monkeys. There is much more that could be written on this topic. The bulk of examples is huge.

You may find that some of this points also can be used on the other candidate and even yourself. However, the intensity and volume on Trump is alarming. And, no he is not going to be presidential, ever.



Five of Many Psychopathic Traits Trump Has Exposed During The Campaign

1. The psychopathic logic 

To decode the irrational logic of a psychopath you need to employ this formula on lies for instance:

  • Trump is telling a lie
  • You believe in it
  • Trump is smart
  • You are an idiot for believing it

Employ this decoder and you will understand the rationality of Trump. He is a con artist and in his own mind a winner. Whoever gets screwed are losers, because they took his bait.

He promises to “Make America Great Again”. Amongst others he will make the American military strong again. But the truth is, there is no other military power on Earth that can deploy fighting and winning forces anywhere on the planet within hours as the USA can.

He promises that he alone can fix it. He is arguably great at constructing large buildings. A skill it takes years to manufacture, fine-tune, and update. He needs other know-how to govern. In his own book “Art of the Deal” he has eleven points for being a great dealer. Number four is “Know your market”. It is not possible to be a master at everything, and when the buck stops at him, he will not be able to land greater negotiations with the Chinese than any other.

2. Transfer of undesireable traits

A lack of empathy will very often propel individuals into misbehavior. In Donald Trump’s case there are numerous instances of crooked behavior, an undesireable trait. A trait he is constantly trying to transfer to Clinton, as if he is wiping a swarm of bees from his body.

3. Manipulator

Donald Trump has repeatedly said things to persuade people. For instance, at his rallies make someone violent. When protesters have demonstrated, Trump has several times uttered that he would like to punch them. On occasions, very likely inspired by Trump, followers have punched protesters at his rallies.

4. The need for praise is infinite

Donald Trump is very easily manipulated if you know how to do it. A former KGB agent, a specialist in profiting on a person’s character, the Russian president Vladimir Putin has praised Donald Trump. Never mind that Russia is an opponent, but Trump has almost had a revealing infatuation for the Russian Premier, just because of Putin’s chess like praise.

5. Never admit anything

Trump has insulted or disrespected most people he has had disagreements with the last year and a half. Instead of offering sincere regrets, he has stretched himself to some general apologetic comments.



Five Psychopathic Red Flags

1. Your political soul mate

If you find yourself completely taken over by a politican – beware! In a normal situation, a politician needs time to win you over.

2. Credibility attributes

Don’t get carried away by the Trump plane, big buildings, and beauty pageants. These are ancient persuasive tools.

3. The know-it-all person

Well, this is Trump in his very own illusive nutshell

4. Tolerance amplifier

Donald Trump has a shady past. In a normal situation this would deem him unqualified to become President. For this reason also, he has been bullying and insulting throughout the campaign. The voters are thus so used to the bullying, that he or she becomes immune to another “scandal”.

5. Gaslighting

Donald Trump has made attempts on projecting the birther thing on Clinton. For years, Trump claimed that President Obama was not born in the USA. During the campaign, he suggested that Clinton had started the whole thing.



Sixteen Psychopathic Tactics

1. Targeting “bad people”

When a person is not giving Trump what he wants, this person becomes the object of negative actions. The FBI has been criticized when they have freed Clinton on the email case.

2. Authoritarian

In order to appear strong, Trump presents himself as tough on crime and bad behavior.

3. Divide and Conquer

Trump has polarized the American people to pit them against each other for his own benefit.

4. Friend or Foe

The interchanging stages of being a foe or a friend happens rapid in the world of psychopaths. One day a person can be the greatest, the next day the very same person can be a moron.

5. Secrecy

Not releasing his Tax Returns is a classic example of keeping exposing information hidden

6. False reference

Trump has repeatedly referred to letters from thousands of people that are concerned about certain things. In 2016 people don’t write letters.

7. Doesn’t use white lies

April 15, 1989 Trump uttered on Larry King Live that the host had bad breath. A natural situation of not mentioning this.

8. Rub salt in the wound

When Trump invited President Clinton’s sex past to the second presidential debate it was also an uncalled attempt to get Ms Clinton of balance.

9. Upside down mentality

Trump has several times attacked people verbally in response to their “attack” on him. Very often the “attack” has merely been an account of bad things associated to Trump. Who really started it?

10. Always somebodies fault

Trump has attributed many government failures on Clinton. It is, for instance, not possible to blame Clinton for the tax code, or any bad legislature. It takes a Congress to pass laws.

11. Blatant hypocrisy

One set of rules for him, another for others. Trump demands transparency of the Clinton emails but will not turn his Tax Returns to the media.

12. Say it, but not say it

Trump often employs a tactic of saying something negative about a person followed by a statement that denounces it. But the bad thing has been said.

13. Change topic

On uncountable shows Trump surrogates have ditched unwanted questions and headed for another topic.

14. Misunderstanding

Trump has on occasions withdrawn stupid answers afterwards by saying he misunderstood the question.

15. No filter

Trump shoots from the hip. It stands out as “from the heart” and honest, but it is just cheap talk.

16. Not afraid of lying

It really doesn’t matter being caught in a lie.



The Three Roles of Actor Trump

The psychopath plays three distinct roles in order to get around and accomplish his (personal) goals. The charmer, the bully and the victim.

First and foremost you have the role of the charmer. It is the billionaire flying in his private jet from one of his own great hotels to another. He will tell you the things you want to hear, how to make America great again, keep lives safe, provide you jobs and health care. This role is to get you to like him.

Then you have the bully role. This role is normally done in secrecy. But in Trump’s case he is deliberately doing the bully role in broad daylight in order to deflect bad background stories and appear as the real alternative to Washington inadequacies. Normally, this role is to get what he wants.

The third role is the victim role. When the polling was really bad, this act surfaced. The system is rigged, the media is against him and so on. This role is for getting sympathy and to explain why he as a winner can lose.



The Flying Monkeys of Trump

In order to get anywhere a psychopath needs partners, our flying monkeys. These are the Trump surrogates that will defend and promote Trump regardless of what goes on. It is quite evident that major Republican politicians are not standing by Trump. What is evident is that Trump has very few strong flying monkeys. A proof that USA still has the moral fabric of heroes. The strongest monkeys are Trump’s family members. And yes, lack of empathy is heritable.



Trump (only) for Resident

Clinton is maybe not the most popular presidential candidate, but in 2016 there is only one alternative.

Clinton is endorsed by some of the most revered people in the United States. Including, the “royal” Bush family.

Trump is spinning that he doesn’t need help. It is the psychopathic spin of a person only fit to be a resident of the United States.

There’s a sucker born every day, don’t be one!


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Lower Division Football Team in Norway Exposes the Secret of Syria

Nordreisa IL 2 (2016)

Lower division football team in Norway handing you a secret

Damascus is one of the oldest continually inhabited cities of the world. The city was inhabited as early as 8 000 to 10 000 years BC. It is the capital of picturesque Syria, the state of today that was founded after World War II. The country marred by a war threatening to uncivil the world.

Syria has been an important area to civilization for millenniums. It has for one been the crossroads between Asia, Europe and Africa. As an integral part of the Middle East it has had a declining importance for interventionist geopolitical interests since 1945, up until today.

In January 2011, the president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia had to flee his country because of protests against corruption and repressive policies. In the west known as the “Arab Spring” this event was the first of many protests, uprisings or armed rebellions in a series of Arab countries that followed.

In rapid succession countries such as Egypt, Libya, Yemen, Bahrain, Morocco, Jordan and Syria experienced revolt. As the dust has settled, there is still uncertainty in most countries. One key issue has been a lack of a clear alternative leadership. Unlike the fall of the communist bloc in Eastern Europe in the late 1980s, were the rebels had a clearer objective and alternative system in mind.

In Syria, the revolt without a clear objective and alternative in mind has dwindled into a devastating war. It is not a true civil war but more like a combatant’s war. It is a war with a multitude of fighting “tribes” and “confused” foreign participants. There is no clear front. This combatant’s war is more a fight for the sake of fighting, more than anything else. What are people fighting for? What are people fighting against? If the forces against the official government forces are able to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad, the alternative president will face the basic challenges as al-Assad has in Syria.

The key domestic challenge in Syria is the multitude of nationalities, religions and level of education. Syria is a melting pot of people. For instance, one percent is of Armenian descent. These were refugees and survivors of the Armenian Holocaust that the Ottoman Empire for the most part committed in 1915-23. Almost one tenth of the people in Syria are Kurds. The Syrian government has for more than fifty years claimed that many Kurds are illegal immigrants from Turkey.

The majority of the Syrian people are of the indigenous Levantine people, the people living in the eastern shores and areas of the Mediterranean Sea. Most of these people are Sunni Muslims. Most Kurds are also Sunni Muslims. President Bashar al-Assad is of the Alawite people. Part of the perceived problem of the Syrian government is that many leaders both civilian and military are of the minority Alawite people.

Prior to President Bashar al-Assad’s father Hafez al-Assad became President of Syria in 1971, only Sunni Muslims could become Head of State. The Sunni Muslims claimed al-Assad was a Shi’a Muslim in order to organize more rally against him. However, it is fair to say that the Alawite people have their own religion, albeit more secret and seemingly adoptable to both other customs and changing times. One of the fears of the today is that the Alawite people will be wiped out physically by a potential new Sunni Muslim majority leader. Nevertheless, Syria was by and large a peaceful nation prior to 2011.


Internal case: A football team of “divided” Syrians fighting shoulder to shoulder in Norway

In the autumn of 2015, Syrian along with other refugees poured through the gates into northeastern Norway from Russia. A number of them stayed for a year in a small village in Northern Norway. In the summer of 2016 a unique event occurred. Sunnis, Alawites, Kurds and so on from Syria played football in the regular football series for men. Not many teams anywhere in the world were purely made of players on the run.

Are we fighting? If there was a real Civil War in Syria, I wouldn’t be in Storslett.

What made this even more special and unconceivable, the players represented parties that are at war with each other in Syria! These footballers living temporarily in Storslett had their own team and played official games for the local football club, Nordreisa IL. In addition to fight together, their record was five wins and seven losses.

Sports and football, in particular, is peacemaking in action. But, this seemed a bit over the top, so I asked one of the players: How can you play together here in Norway and have fun, whereas you are fighting as mortal enemies in Syria?

The reply was simple and illuminating: Are we fighting? If there was a real Civil War in Syria, I wouldn’t be in Storslett.

The legitimate question is: How much of a civil war is the war in Syria?


External case: Who assassinated former Prime Minister of Lebanon, Rafic Hariri in February 2005?

In October 2004, Rafic Hariri left the post of Prime Minister. A few months later, a motorcade in Beirut was attacked with a TNT bomb force of 1 000 kilograms. DNA from a young male suicide bomber was reportedly found. 22 persons died, including former Minister of Economy, Bassel Fleihan, along with the revered Rafic Hariri.

Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists

The International community alleged that Hezbollah and the Syrian government were involved in the assassination of the Lebanese politician. This made little sense because Lebanon has been, and still is, longtime allies of Syria and Hezbollah. Both Syria and Hezbollah have denied the allegation.

Another twist, the western media (BBC) had questioned Hariri and Lebanon for not fighting Hezbollah as a terrorist group in November 2001. This was in the aftermath of the World Trade Center disaster on September 11, 2001. President George W. Bush had proclaimed to the world, that “Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists”. The US led international community was possibly hostile to Hariri.

In any normal circumstance, there would be little interest for Syria to kill the ex. Prime Minister of ally Lebanon. However, it is quite clear that a weakened alliance between Lebanon and Syria was of interest for both the Israeli and the Americans. This shows that there is a possibility that external national interests can create undeserved problems for Syria.


In the wake of rebel events in other Arab nations, an internal situation of multitude paved way for external combatant’s interests in Syria

Compared to other areas of the Middle East and the Arab World, Syria doesn’t pose a great international interest, including for the USA. The USA has had a very strong interest and presence in the larger Middle East area ever since World War II, starting with the creation of the Jewish state Israel in 1948. In more recent decades the interest of the USA has mushroomed because of fossil fuels, other corporate interests, and in the war against terrorism.

Syria is a small stepping stone to some power structures in the Middle East. A Syria in turmoil is of interest for the USA. As long as bad agents, in the eyes of the US, are preoccupied in the Syrian Combatant’s War (Syrian Civil War), the threat to Israel and oil-filled areas seem diminished.

Because of its internal situation, Syria has become a lone political wolf in the Arab world. This has made the country vulnerable in international politics. For many years, in lack of international political leverage, the Syrian government has nurtured close ties to Hezbollah. Hezbollah is a paramilitary political force in Lebanon and an adversary to Israel. Shi’a Muslim Hezbollah has been supported financially by the Shi’a Muslim government of Iran.

A side effect of these political ties is a clash with the sphere of interest of the USA and other key countries.

Throughout the reign of both father and son al-Assad, Syria has had close ties to the Soviet Union and Russia. The port of Tartus is just east of Homs and north of the Lebanon border. The port of Tartus has for many decades been the only harbor in the Mediterranean Sea available to Russian activity, including military. The Soviet Union was the most important trade partner of Syria, and its break down was also a dent to the Syrian economy.

Although symbolic, the Russian interests today seem primarily of showcasing power. Russia wants to be perceived as a strong player on the international political arena. Since the Soviet Union folded, the USA has been the only superpower in the world. President Vladimir Putin and Russia is once again trying to get into the spot light. Syria is a great opportunity; originally, its intrinsic geopolitical value is small in international politics. Internal opposition in the USA against another full scale war in the Middle East makes the risk for Russia even smaller.

Nevertheless, the Russian challenge is poking the USA to get more overtly involved in Syria. In addition, all the Arab states in turmoil and with weaker governments have become a breeding ground for terrorist organization such as ISIL. Areas where terrorist can operate more freely, recruit more terrorist and even seize control over. The USA and its allies are at war against terrorism. The lawless “Wild West” territories such as current Syria have become the “Land of the terrorist” and thus a geographic target for the US allies.

In Syria, the civilians are paying a heavy price. One hundred years after Syria became a safe haven for the Armenian people, the people of Syria is in dire need of refuge. Millions of Syrians are internally displaced or fleeing abroad. The humanitarian catastrophe in Syria is disrupting civilization, the whole world.

The European Union is trembling on the compounded effect of economic crises in many of its member states and the influx of millions of refugees from Syria. The Syrian refugee situation is also gas to the fire of political democratic dissatisfaction in the USA.

The number of organizations and countries involved in the Syrian Combatant’s War is daunting. It seems all trouble makers are drawn to Syria, just because there is a brawl. The international community has almost stopped getting involved in Syria on civil matters, such as food and medicine supply. Instead weapons are pouring in, much to the delight of the weapon industry.

Historically, international crises have been dealt from a perspective of individual national interests before the perspective of humanitarianism. Now, the cost of the humanitarian problem has become so high that it has become “the national interest” of especially Europe and the USA.

The Syrian Combatant’s War has lasted for five years. Syria needs stability for the next five years now at all political costs. A weapons embargo must be considered, the confidence in President al-Assad restored, and foreign nationals fighting in Syria should return home. Syria and the world are melting pots, if we cannot stop the collapse of peace minded Syria it might spread to the rest of the world.

Burfjord IL 2 vs Nordreisa IL 2

Syrians and other teammates shoulder to shoulder with all-Norwegian opponent in a common cause for civility. Burfjord IL 2 vs Nordreisa IL 2 October 13th, 2016

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Posted in Internasjonal, Samfunn og idrett

De fem feilene med idrettens kamp mot overgrep og ditt ansvar som foresatt


Da Tromsøsaken vedrørende overgrep i en barnehage opptok mediabildet i går kom idretten på banen med en pressekonferanse. Den siktede personen har også trent et lokalt fotballag i Tromsø. Frykten er at den siktede har gjort overgrep i tromsidretten.

Vi får inderlig håpe at det ikke har skjedd. Dersom det er begått overgrep på en arbeidsplass med diverse lønnede tiltak mot overgrep, så er det overveiende fare for at det er lettere for en potensiell overgriper å ta seg til rette innen idretten.

Idrettsforbundet har i de siste årene innført politiattesten. Idrettslagene må kontinuerlig få attester fra politiet på at alle de som innen idretten er i kontakt med barn og ungdom ikke har overgrep på rullebladet. Det frivillige arbeidet på dette felt har ikke kunne forhindret de potensielle overgrepene i Tromsøsaken.

Politiattestreformen som idrettsforbundet har gjennomført har fem feil som gjør at den ikke fungerer slik formålet er. Formålet er å unngå overgrep innen idretten:

  1. Den tar ikke hensyn til overgripere som ikke er registrert hos politiet. Det er å frykte at kun et fåtall overgripere blir dokumentert og behandlet i rettssystemet
  2. Den kan ikke avdekke potensielle nye overgripere. Det vil alltid være nye overgripere i samfunnet
  3. Den påfører de frivillige i idretten en byråkratisk arbeidsoppgave med marginal effekt. Politiattestsystemet som er innført kan kun forhindre en minoritet av overgrep. Dugnadsarbeidet kunne vært rettet mot bedre anti-overgrepstiltak.  Tiltak som kunne forhindre majoriteten av potensielle overgrep
  4. Et av de mest graverende resultatene av reformen er at idrettslaget og den tillitsvalgte med ansvar for politiattestene kan bli ansvarliggjort for overgrep. Fordi man ikke gjorde den frivillige jobben godt nok. Dersom en dokumentert overgriper slipper igjennom nettet kan styremedlemmer og andre potensielt bli straffe- og sivilrettslig ansvarliggjort for overgrep en annen person har gjennomført.
  5. Det største ankepunktet mot politiattestene er at den gir en livsfarlig og falsk trygghetsfølelse. Foresatte tror at – når politiattestene er i orden, så er alt ok. Politiattesten gjør folk bedagelig.

På tross av en tiltakende organisering av idretten og fotballen så sliter mange tillitsvalgte med uansvarlige foreldre. Fotballforbundet har sågar gått til det skritt å opprette foreldrefri soner langs sidelinja på fotballbanene. Foreldrene er ikke i stand til å oppføre seg.

Det er foreldrene som er nøkkelen til at frivillig idrett for barn og ungdom skal fungere. Fotballforbundet har nettopp iverksatt tiltak mot foreldrene. Idretten burde i stedet iverksette tiltak med foreldrene.

Det grunnleggende problemet er å unngå flest mulig situasjoner der to personer er alene. Det er to grunner for dette:

  1. En potensiell overgriper må ikke få anledning til å tilbringe tid alene med barn/ungdom
  2. Et barn/ en ungdom må ikke få anledning til å beskylde en tillitsvalgt/trener for uriktige overgrep

I et møysommelig arbeid som Nordreisa idrettsråd gjennomførte over en periode på fem år resulterte i en idrettsplan der det beste virkemiddelet mot overgrep ble vedtatt. Nordreisa idrettsråd gjennomførte en dokumentering av idretten i Nordreisa gjennom blant annet idrettens samfunnsregnskap i 2008. Den påfølgende idrettsplan ble vedtatt av to årsmøter for nordreisaidretten.

Virkemiddelet er at det bør være tre voksne personer rundt et aktivitets-lag til enhver tid. Lagene må gjerne ha kun en trener, men noen foresatte bør alltid være tilstede sammen med barn/ungdom. Foreldrene bør sette opp en rulleringsplan for når hver enkelt skal være tilstede. Det er spesielt viktig å være tilstede før og etter selve aktiviteten. Å gjøre overgrep midt i en fotballkamp er litt vanskeligere, men det er mulig det også.

Virkemiddelet er at det bør være tre voksne personer rundt et aktivitets-lag til enhver tid

Nå skal ikke de foresatte være tilstede som et virkemiddel mot overgrep. De skal være der fordi det er gøy og ta del i deres barns idrettshverdag. Anti-overgrep er bare en positiv bivirkning.

Idrettsplanen til Nordreisa idrettsråd for nordreisaidretten ble for øvrig latterliggjort av blant annet organisasjonssjef Sylvi Ofstad i Troms idrettskrets og anleggskonsulent Johnni Håndstad i Troms fylke. Sylvi Ofstad som pratet om politiattest på pressekonferansen er selv ikke egnet som leder innen idretten.

Dersom de foresatte ønsker en trygg idrettshverdag for sine håpefulle så ligger det ultimate ansvaret hos de foresatte selv. Tromsøsaken viser at selv betalte barnehageansatte kan man ikke ta for gitt.

Blogginnlegg er ikke er ment til å være noe annet enn ytringer i en samfunnsdebatt. Og representerer ikke en holdning eller noe annet for verken meddommere eller noen annen samfunnsgruppe.

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Posted in Samfunn og idrett

Liverpool FC Fan Fritz Moen – The Most Outrageous Miscarriage of Justice in Europe

Fritz Moen

Mr. Fritz Moen of Norway was an avid Liverpool Football Club supporter. Following the results of the reds was a favorite past time for the multi-handicapped person. In the late 1970s Liverpool FC was steamrolling its competitors match after match.

On the very same day that two Liverpool fixtures year apart were played, two murders were committed in Trondheim, Norway. The two criminal acts would eventually destroy innocent Moen’s life.

On Saturday September 4th in 1976, Liverpool FC beat Coventry City 3-1 at home at Anfield. Kevin Keegan, David Johnson and John Toshack netted for the reds. Later this evening a student in Trondheim was raped and murdered.

A year later, Saturday October 1st, LFC lost 2-0 to Manchester United in front of 55.000 spectators at Old Trafford. Later that evening another young female student was raped and murdered in Trondheim.

Despite having alibies on both dates, Fritz Moen was first charged for murder in the 1977 incident, and later for the case in 1976. He was, in reality, sentenced for life on both accounts. Contrary to his good behavior, Moen would spend longer periods in solitary confinement. His handicap both in hearing and speaking made this especially painful for the innocent man. He was in fact deprived of communicating with other human beings for most of his time in jail.

The son of a German soldier and a feeble Norwegian mother in 1941, Moen was judged an outcast from the very moment he was born. His handicap, which didn’t enable him normal interaction with other kids and people, and lack of parents meant that he spent his childhood and adolescence in several institutions. After his confirmation, he sat outside the church crying. His mates were surrounded by family; Fritz had no family and was all alone.

The difficulty of communicating was frustrating, in particular, with women. For a short spell he was a flasher. All of these attributes made Moen an easy target for a police force eager to find a murderer. The public demand for a convicted perpetrator was mounting in the years following the brutal murders.

In his award winning book of 2007 “Overgrepet” (Maltreatment), private eye Mr. Tore Sandberg dissects the atrocious police and judicial work. After working a decade on his case, financed by tabloid magazine “Se og Hør”, Sandberg won exonerations for Moen on both accounts.

Together with renowned lawyer Mr. John Christian Elden, Sandberg was able to get the last acquittal on behalf of Moen in August 2006. Sadly, Moen would not be able to experience the joy as he passed away in March 2005. A week after Liverpool FC beat Everton 2-1 at Anfield.

None of the representatives of the State who were paid to get innocent Fritz Moen illegally charged, sentenced and imprisoned have ever apologized for the gruesome injustice Moen had to endure. The silence tactic employed is the very proof of an official error. They do not want to take responsibility for their failures.

What is even more questionable is the promoting of perpetrators. One of the worst offenders in the Moen case, prosecutor Mr. Olaf Jakhelln, was promoted to the highest judicial position in the very same district Jakhelln’s malpractice took place.

In the process of getting the wrongful judgments reopened, several attempts were made to cover-up for the sinister judicial work that put Moen away.

In the appeal cases, judges would discard obvious facts and maintain wrongful sentences on minute protocol because it sounded good on judicious paper. This is when details overshadow the topic, because it sounds cleverer to master the tiny things. The big picture is not interesting.

It is easy for very intelligent people of the law to carve out phrases and judicial lingo that will protect them against any wrongdoing. Furthermore, nobody will make them accountable. The people that handle judicial processes are the brethren in the law hood. No other place is the fox minding the geese as much as in the judicial domain. Thus, people of the law are pretentiously flawless.

Obvious wrongful decisions permeate not only the judicial system. It is like a snowball. Once it has started to roll down the hill, it will only gain momentum. It is important to learn how the initial and damaging processes start in order to avoid miscarriage of justice and other bad decision making.

Because, once an error has been made, it will feed on anything to stay alive.

In the Fritz Moen cases the numbers of errors are staggering. Only five will be listed here:

  1. In one case, Moen was manipulated in interrogation to confess details so they would fit foot in shoe with the other other evidence.
  2. In the other case, the police did the opposite. Other evidence was adjusted to fit Moen’s explanation.
  3. The police created a theory that bacteria had changed the blood type of the perpetrator found on one victim so it could match Moen’s blood type.
  4. In a reenactment of one murder the police dropped the sequence where the perpetrator had to tie a knot around the victim’s neck. Moen’s right arm was crippled and it would have been impossible for him to tie the knot.
  5. During the sentencing court cases no sufficient time was spent on interpreters for the deaf. It is astonishing that the administrator would continue the trials when it was obvious that there was no real communication between Moen and the court. Expert witness who alerted the court of the problem was threatened to silence by Judge Mr. Karl Solberg. He was the only person in the court with the authority to dismiss the obstruction of justice that all bystanders were uncomfortably aware of.

Fritz Moen’s case is so unique that it adjoins everybody. If injustice unashamedly can be carried out in such an important matter as in two – 2 – distinct murder cases, what about the ordinary cases? When members of the judicial system have a weak understanding of what is wrong or right, it is your responsibility to acknowledge it: Always question authority.

We’re sorry Fritz, You Walked Alone.

Blogginnlegg er ikke er ment til å være noe annet enn ytringer i en samfunnsdebatt. Og representerer ikke en holdning eller noe annet for verken meddommere eller noen annen samfunnsgruppe.

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Posted in Domstolen, Lov og rett

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