Open letter to President Barack Obama

From one Nobel Peace Laureate to another

Adolfo Pérez Esquivel Alai, América Latina en movimiento

Hear the outcry of the peoples!

The situation in Syria is an object of serious preoccupation and once more the United States, assuming the role of the world’s policeman, proposes to invade Syria in the name of “Freedom” and “Human Rights”.

Continue reading “Open letter to President Barack Obama”

Syria: Stop another senseless war

They did it once and look where they got us. Do not let the hawks lead us into another meaningless slaughter. Their profit must not come at the cost of our peace.

Regarding the facts:

Talking Points from Phyllis Bennis, Director, New Internationalism Project Institute for Policy Studlies

Tom Hayden – A Call for Forceful Diplomacy http://www.pdamerica.org/component/k2/item/1809-tom-hayden-a-call-for-forceful-diplomacy

McClatchy News Service, “To some, US case for Syrian gas attack, strike has too many holes,”  http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2013/09/02/201027/to-some-us-case-for-syrian-gas.html#.Uid-LFcpg_g

Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting, “Which Syrian Chemical Attack Account Is More Credible?”  http://www.fair.org/blog/2013/09/01/which-syrian-chemical-attack-account-is-more-credible/

International Law:

Oona A. Hathaway and Scott J. Shapiro “On Syria, a U.N. Vote Isn’t Optional,”  New York Times Op Ed,http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/04/opinion/on-syria-a-un-vote-isnt-optional.html

“The Rush to Bomb Syria: Undermining International Law and Risking Wider War,” Western States Legal Foundation Briefing Paper, http://wslfweb.org/docs/wslfsyriabrief1.pdf

Faith Group Statements Opposing Military Action in Syria—Not Exhaustive:

Letter from Trappist Nuns in Syria: “Blood Fills our Streets, our eyes, our hearts”  (http://www.catholicworldreport.com/Blog/2538/a_letter_from_trappist_nuns_in_syria_blood_fills_our_streets_our_eyes_our_heart.aspx#.UiOiqGSDR7P).

Pope Francis: violence begets violence http://paxchristiusa.org/2013/09/03/syria-pope-francis-war-begets-war-violence-begets-violence-calls-for-peace-for-syria/

Pax Christi International:  http://paxchristiusa.org/2013/08/29/statement-dialogue-is-the-only-way-towards-an-end-of-the-violence-in-syria/

Pax Christi USA:  http://paxchristiusa.org/2013/08/31/syria-war-is-still-a-defeat-for-humanity/ (links to US Bishops and Pope’s statements on web site)

US Conference of Catholic Bishops: http://www.usccb.org/news/2013/13-157.cfm

Sisters of Mercy of the Americas:  www.sistersofmercy.org

NETWORK: National Catholic Social Justice Lobby: www.networklobby.org

Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns and action items from CMSM, incl.  Syrian bishop speaking out against U.S. Military Action: http://maryknollogc.org/alerts/urge-congress-dont-attack-syria

NCR Article:  What moral theologians say about getting involved in Syria http://ncronline.org/news/global/what-moral-theologians-say-about-getting-involved-syria

Sojourners:  http://sojo.net/blogs/2013/08/29/syria-we-must-use-moral-compass-guide-our-moral-outrage

Pax Christi USA:  http://paxchristiusa.org/2013/08/31/syria-war-is-still-a-defeat-for-humanity/ (links to US Bishops and Pope’s statements on web site)

Mennonite Church USA:  http://www.mennoniteusa.org/?s=syria&x=0&y=0 and http://washingtonmemo.org/category/issues/middle-east-issues/

United Church of Christ and Disciples of Christ:  http://globalministries.org/news/mee/churches-address-president.html and http://www.ucc.org/news/syria-refugees-08022013.html

Presbyterians (PCUSA): http://www.pcusa.org/news/2013/8/30/stated-clerk-issues-statement-wake-escalating-viol/

Read more: http://www.shahidulnews.com/syria-stop-another-senseless-war#ixzz2g9oilmBx

The Current State of Health Care in this Country

By Arjun Janah

I have learned, from experience with my aged parents and my younger sister-in-law, that elementary services, or even basic coverage, can be denied on the flimsiest of grounds.? My own experience with physicians and hospitals has been that I normally get at most 15 minutes with the first, and less than a day to recover after surgeries with the second, before being shown the door.? There is also no followup.

It is true that, given a reasonable plan (obtained either by means of collective bargaining if one is fortunate enough to belong to a large organization and so paying group-rates, or else by paying high individual-rate premiums if one is lucky enough to be affluent) expensive tests and high-tech procedures may be ordered, that often involve tens of thousands of dollars of charges.? But these seem to be driven more by considerations of profits than by true concern for the long-term well-being of the patients. Less profitable and less drastic procedures, that may be very simple, on the one hand, or may involve sizing up the whole individual and his/her history and circumstances, and utilizing lifestyle changes and long-term remedial services on the other, are simply not part of the health-care equation.? Though they might drastically reduce health care costs, while improving long-term outcomes, they yield less profit, and might even make much of the current health-care behemoth redundant.

A tremendous amount of effort goes into paperwork — leaving n urses, for example, relegating basic patient-care duties to nurses’ aides. Surgeons are usually unavailable after an operation, despite all that may go wrong during recovery. Internists often have little or no coordination with specialists, to whom the whole picture of the patient’s health is of little or no interest.

Doctors themselves run up huge debts in medical school, and are mercilessly driven as interns, where they often have shifts that run for days with little or no sleep, while yet being responsible for most of whatever little routine medical attention a ward patient receives. They then scramble to set up a practice, preferably in a lucrative surgical specialty, so as to pay off the debt, and then often endeavor to stay as far away from hospital wards and routine patient care as they can get.

Surgeons are willing to spend time with a patient prior to highly expensive (and often unnecessary, though profitable) surgeries, but usually have no time for them after-wards.? Other physicians? are forced to cram in as many patients as possible per day, either to meet their basic expenses and their chosen lifestyles, or else to satisfy HMO’s and hospitals for whom they work. Fifteen minutes has become the standard maximum per patient, including time for basic physican’s paperwork. Many spend far less time.? Basic examination tasks, once performed by physicians, are increasingly assigned to physicians’ assistants, nurses, medical assistants or others.? Those who buck this trend find them selves in trouble, either financially or with their overseers — often people who have no medical background.

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