Tuesday, December 30, 2008


Musings from Bickerstaff

Topic 1

I played Santa for a charity just before Christmas. I have a wonderful suit and a wig and beard made from Siberian yak hair. I was so convincing, even my daughter did not recognize me. I knew all the children's names devised by a clever system and an able staff. Each child came up and sat on my lap and asked for whatever gift they wanted whilst their parents beamed proudly. I, of course promised Santa would see what he could do. I then realized I was like a bank. I could take their wants, promise them the sky, and pass the delivery onto those who would fund the venture without me bearing any risk and getting most of the reward.

As an aside, only one child wanted to just play with her friend. That was all she wanted for Christmas. Her friend was sick and at Children's Hospital. Sometimes, even Santa cries.

Topic 2

Since Hamas has begun launching Rockets in 2006, only 20 Israeli's have been killed -- four of which happened in the past few days. Israel, upon Hamas being elected in 2006, froze tax and customs receipts worth $50 million per month. It then shelled Gaza calling it a preemptive strike against rocket attack. In a far reaching article in today's Guardian, Rory McCarthy details some missteps Israel took that escalated this conflict. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/dec/30/israelandthepalestinians-middleeast

Israel also destroyed a prison in Gaza that housed political prisoners accused of cooperating....wait for it..with Israel. With no wall to protect them, many were summarily executed in the streets by angry mobs. I do not fault Israel for striking back for Hamas led rockets being launched into Israel. If the mission is to topple the Hamas leadership, so be it. But allow supplies and International aid get to the hospitals to care for the citizen wounded. The spilled blood of an Arab child is as equally horrific to the spilled blood of an Israeli child. Both are an affront to humanity.

The US is the only nation in the world standing by Israel while the rest are condemning the action of killing children and civilians. It gives pause to wonder sometimes.

I wish everyone a Happy New Year, except Madoff and and anyone who ever profited from derivatives.

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