I am currently working as an independent journalist blurring the lines of activist journalist & citizen who believes in serving his country. I want to help bring more information to the America public as fast as possible to speak truth to power and expose that the king has no clothes.
I grew up in Chicago and went to the Soviet Union my first trip aboard at 19 with my Political Science department in 1979. I did not become a communist, but I tried to be an expatriate when Reagan was elected and left America and tried to live in Rome. In my late twenties, I came back and ended up owning a property management company in South Florida.
In my thirties, I taught snowboarding, got my M.B.A. and started charity called Snowboard Outreach Society now named SOS Outreach, in Vail, CO. It now recognized as a leader in youth developmental programs nationally. During my forties, I got married had two kids and was a two-term county commissioner. I got divorced at 50 or divorce got me and now at 55 I left my non-profit be a social justice advocate.
This avocational and vocational experience as taught me how to connect the dots, synthesize them and communicate a vision and execute it. It always comes from a passion to fight for compassion. I know it sound like fighting for compassion is a ‘dyslexic spiritual oxymoron’, but it has worked for me.
There will never be a shortage of injustices in the world. I learned in B school you need to work backwards from your goals when developing a strategy. And, that simple strategy has created a lot of great outcomes both as a Commissioner and Executive Director of the non-profit.
My goal now is to mitigate the horrific tragedies due to war, especially one created by our own government in the Middle East that only benefits the military industrial complex. We are in a perpetual war in the Middle East. Over 50 million children sleep each night in refugee camps due to wars, innocent lives are being lost, hundreds of trillions of dollars are being spent on war and not on education, infrastructure and other domestic needs.
I could easily rattle off more information, but the next step is what we should do about it. I’ve already written my politicians, wrote letters to the editor and protested. All are important but the question I keep asking myself is where is the leverage that could have the fastest and greatest impact. I’m not a patience man. When MLK spoke of the urgency of now, he meant it. If we continue to be complacent it will create greater inequality, more war and lose of our democracy.
So what do I do to change the system? One ridged. Well, this quote by the author of ‘State of War’ and ‘Pay Any Price’ James Risen is as close as it gets to a way to make a difference. “Without aggressive investigative reporting, we can’t really have a democracy, because the only real oversight for the government is an independent and aggressive press. And I think that’s what the government really fears more than anything else, is an aggressive investigative reporting in which we shine a light on what’s going on inside the government.”
I am in Washington D.C. for 3 weeks of research & reporting. I’ll follow Congress, the President and ultimately the build up to a war that is “counter productive.” I have attended most of the Senate and Congressional hearings that occurred in September and December, read up on as much as possible like Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF), met with numerous journalists peace groups and scholars and now acting must act.
I have scheduled an important meeting with former Chief of Staff to Colin Powell, Lawrence Wilkerson to help me lay out a plan on how to litigate the war going forward. We have plenty of information that gives us what went wrong with Iraq to project forward the war crimes, misappropriations & cover ups taking place right now to prove there are a lot of injustices occurring, waste and profiteering. Forget believing it is the military industrial complex, it’s NOW the military-industrial-technological-entertainment-academic-media-intelligence-homeland security-surveillance-national security-corporate complex.*
Our citizens elect representatives are not representing us. Democracy cannot exist with an uniformed public. Do we sit back? As a parent, I can’t. As a believer in something greater than myself, I can’t.
Undoubtedly, there will be many new developments in the war that are outside of anyone’s prognostications, but here are some of my initial thoughts on what could be researched and developed to expose the truth. Few reporters are focusing in on the war to the level and depth that is needed and most Americans aren’t even following it. For example, few reporters attacked the weak line of questioning that was given to Sec. Kerry in the hearings in September and December by both the Senate and Congress. Little is being covered on the number of contractors being used. I am trying to meet up with Peter Singer at New America Foundation. No one is looking into the matter of what level of commitments we are getting from our partnering countries and what plans and strategies we have as the war continues with 3500 troops and the dropping of nearly 2000 missiles.
For example, by covering the new Republican Senate leadership of Armed Services, Sen. McCain, Budget Sen. Sessions, Foreign Affairs Sen. Corker, I hope to determine how the following scenarios might play out:
*Will a debate of a new Authorization for Use of Military Forces be taken up by the Senate or the Congress as stated in their December meetings? Rep. Boehner stated this week that he expects to see the President deliver an AUMF, but when questioned about what he’ll do if the President does not bring one to them, Boehner’s response was, “We’ll see.” Politicians are playing politics over this and don’t want to bring an Authorization forward.
*Will new spending or “boots on the ground” occur?
*What will be said in the debates for the AUMF and will there be new developments?
*What will the State Department, Pentagon and CIA want or change?
*How will the coalitions with the 40 partnering countries continue to play out, particularly Iran & Saudi Arabia?
*What will the training of the 5000 Syrian troops really do? Congress approved 150 Billion dollars to train 5000 troops in Saudi Arabia and ready in 2016. How will that really work and what will be the true expectations and outcomes?
I have been working on an in-depth, comprehensive focus on the build up to the new war and want to expose the weaknesses and lies in the case for war, in the hopes of mitigating the deaths, brutality and waste of it all, with billions of dollars going to the war and Former CIA Director Leon Panetta saying it will be a 30-year war. Why should American’s allow the United States government to spend trillions of dollars on war and say that there is no money for domestic spending and stand by while America declines?
I want more Americans to know what is happening TODAY and protect a country that doesn’t dream of justice we fight for it, for those that died for it, so we may continue living it.
“Like anybody, I would like to live a long life,” the Rev. Martin Luther King told his listeners, who had braved a thunderstorm to be there. “Longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will. And He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. . . I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land!”
THE FINAL words of MLK’s final speech, delivered from the pulpit of the Mason Temple Church of God in Memphis on April 3, 1968, eerily foreshadowed the next day’s catastrophe.
*‘The Complex: How the Military Invades Our Everyday Lives’ Nick Turse