Time's Up: Israel's Wiggle Room Just Ran Out. Showdown Ahead.

There is no diplomatic solution, no grand agreement, no way for Israel to coexist peacefully with its neighbors while occupying Palestinian territory and deliberately subjecting them to sub-third world existence. Turkey and the Palestinians have strong arguments supporting their recent actions, and whether right or wrong, they will be heard: the present situation has gone on long enough. It has to change.

Anyone interested in Middle East politics should be aware of two, no, make that three … four very big recent developments involving Israel:

    1. Turkey, Israel’s strongest ally in the region, is now openly hostile to the Jewish state, kicking out its diplomatic staff, withdrawing its own, and promising military protection to any vessel carrying supplies to Gaza in defiance of Israel’s naval blockade. In other words, Turkey just said fuck you, bring it on.

    2. The Palestinians are seeking an elevation of status in the U.N. to full statehood, allowing them access to resources reserved for nation-states. In other words, Israel’s occupation is about to be challenged in the international arena when the U.N. meets for annual general assembly later this month.

    3. The U.N. Secretary General, in response to pressure to stop the Palestinians from moving forward with plans they announced months ago, said, basically, that 20 years of talks have gotten nowhere and the Palestinians therefore have a right to seek statehood.

    4. Clashes along the Israel-Egypt border ever since the fall of Mubarek are straining relations to the point that Egyptian protestors are calling for the cancellation of their peace treaty with Israel. Israel can no longer assume that its southern border is safe, a cornerstone of Middle East peace for the past 30+ years.

There is no diplomatic solution, no grand agreement, no way for Israel to coexist peacefully with its neighbors while occupying Palestinian territory and deliberately subjecting them to sub-third world existence. Turkey and the Palestinians have strong arguments supporting their recent actions, and whether right or wrong, they will be heard: the present situation has gone on long enough. It has to change.

To the casual American observer these actions appear hostile toward Israel, but, since the current situation can no longer stand, it’s the next logical step. The current Israeli government headed by Prime Minister Binny Netanyahu has been stalling peace talks while moving forward with colonizing Palestinian territory, bragging to his supporters that he has America wrapped around his finger and can do whatever he damn well wants. The casual observer would not know this, but the Palestinians do, and so do all those world leaders meeting at the U.N. — there’s video on Youtube from Binny’s own mouth.

The reversal of relations with Turkey is the bigger blow for Israel. Turkey, with its economy booming, had close military and diplomatic ties with Israel, and was the one Muslim nation that played the game the way Israel prefers. Black Sea resorts in Turkey are favored by vacationing Israelis. The countries’ military forces conducted war games together and traded technology. Not anymore.

Israel’s refusal to apologize for killing nine Turkish nationals last year inflamed Turkish anger and led to the meltdown in relations. Prime Minister Erdogan in Turkey has purged the military and taken thorough control of the country under a moderate Islamist government, so he has latitude and he’s using it. Like many Muslim leaders, he’s sick of the way the Palestinians are being treated by their Israeli occupiers. For Westerners, imagine a Christian nation taken over by Muslim invaders and occupied for 60 years, subjected to constant warfare, sea and land routes blockaded, people living desperately in a society on the brink of collapse, basic utilities like power and sewage controlled by the occupiers. And when they rise up against these conditions, the occupiers use brutal, overwhelming firepower and thuggish security tactics. That’s modern day Israel in the eyes of the Muslim world.

So, you see, time’s up. A major showdown is brewing that will reshape Middle East politics.

Scoundrels and Thieves: Another Election Stolen. Location: Wisconsin

Following the crooked footsteps of Florida 2000 and Ohio 2004, the results of the recent vote in Wisconsin are statistically impossible. Numbers don’t lie. But, it seems, they do, and it’s either bad exit polls or bad GOP election officials that are telling tall tales.


This time it’s Wisconsin. Another election stolen right before our eyes, exposed by statistical analysis.

Following the crooked footsteps of Florida 2000 and Ohio 2004, the results of the recent vote in Wisconsin are statistically impossible. Numbers don’t lie. But, it seems, they do, and it’s either bad exit polls or bad GOP election officials that are telling tall tales.

Judging by history, I bet it’s the latter.

All five exit polls conducted in Wisconsin during the recent attempt to recall Republican state senators who backed Koch-funded Governor Walker show Democrats getting more votes than the official tally, sometimes by wide margins. Here’s an analysis by Richard Charnin:

According to Charnin, “Based on the True Vote Model and the exit polls, it is very likely that the District 8 and 14 recall elections were stolen. The Republicans control the state senate by a 17-16 majority, but the Democrats should be in control by 18-15.”

Any crank can spit out statistical analysis, so I’m presuming that Charnin, a trained mathematician and analytical software consultant, is an expert observer. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it’s a freakin’ duck! The skewed election results don’t surprise me because it follows a pattern of mysterious discrepancies and GOP chicanery. Let’s remember Florida 2000:

Exit polls showed Al Gore won the Florida vote by three percent. The official result was he lost by like 0002 percent, and the Republicans on the Supreme Court crowned their man George Bush the winner in defiance of Constitutional procedure. Even though exit polls in other states matched official results closely, Florida was declared an anomaly, rather than presume Jeb Bush and friends stole three percent of the vote for his brother, Junior. Hmm, what’s more likely?

Add on 2004 when both Ohio and Florida exit polls showed John Kerry winning those states but the official result gave Bush victories, and the trend becomes obvious.

Exit polling in most other states aligned with the official results. In the two states that made all the difference and where Republicans controlled state government, however, statistical analysis proves that the official vote totals favoring Bush were impossible. Hmm.

I studied political science in college and took several courses on survey research, and the more I studied the science behind the statistics the more I realized that numbers don’t lie, people lie. Yes, people sometimes lie to pollsters, and pollsters can set up polls to show results they want. But if a thousand people are polled, and the poll is done scientifically, the accuracy of the results is within three percent no matter what. Get ten thousand people to answer survey questions — which is possible in big states like Ohio and Florida with 25 or more polling locations on election day — and the results will be within one percent accuracy. On the flip side, there’s a 1 in 20 chance that no matter how big the sample size, the results can’t be trusted. Statistics, though, are not the only evidence of voter fraud.

In 2000, Republican officials in south Florida hired some friends in the software business to write a program that could flip the results of an election undetected. The guy who wrote the program presumed it was an exercise in learning if it could be done, in order to catch Democrats trying to steal the election. He testified before the Ohio House about what he did after it became obvious to him and nearly everyone else who studied the election results that the election really was stolen … by the people he worked for!

Evidence of fraud is also all over the 2004 vote in Ohio, but the guy who was going to testify died the day before he was set to appear. He worked with then Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell (R, Obviously) to process the election results through third-party computer servers. It’s been well-documented that those computers, controlled by highly partisan Republicans, kicked into action the night of the election and gave back results far different than the exit polls.

Elections stolen from under our noses. I was there in Ohio in 2004 working as an exit pollster, and I counted results that favored Kerry a little more than expected. But the official result, after reworked by a “man in the middle” computer attack, favored Bush. I also worked in the national exit poll reporting center during the 2000 election, then as a field pollster in 2008 and as a field supervisor in 2010. I know how the exit polling business works from the inside out, and while far from infallible, I trust those results more than the official ones.

The duck is quacking like that annoying Aflac mascot. Will America hear it and take action to protect our electoral system?