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Monday, July 30, 2007

BEWARE: THE CRAZIES SURROUND US

BEWARE: THE CRAZIES SURROUND US

Ever since I could remember, even as young as five years, and I do remember things that occurred when I was five, I used to watch people and listen to what they said. I listened to my father as he extolled the virtues of his home country, Italy, and Mussolini, who by the way did a lot of good things in Italy before he teamed up with the madman in the North, and denounced the US when they went to war against Italy. It was years later when my mother, in front of my father, said: “Ask him why he left Italy?” My mother had that knack of cutting to the quick. The true story was that he left Italy because he did not want to be conscripted into Mussolini’s army. So my father had a dirty little secret. Don’t we all.

Observing people is what I have always done. So I was a natural when I was exposed to Philosophy at Boston College. I remember the first day of Logic class when the Jesuit informed us that the course intended to teach us logic, but not to be overjoyed because most people do not think logically and eventually we would have a difficult time communicating with all these illogical individuals. How correct he was. So Logic was the primer followed by Epistemology --that branch of philosophy that studies the nature, methods, limitations, and validity of knowledge and belief – otherwise the study of truth.

I have always loved the word “truth” and its meaning. As I see it, Truth is fact, knowledge, and what is. It represents the embodiment of what things mean. What has intrigued me is that presenting similar fact to individuals, many would eventually conclude many different conclusions. The same facts or bits of knowledge and observations but many quite different conclusions. In the US and around the world when an event occurs, conclusions are drawn. Eventually and in due time, there arise so many conspiracy theories, many of which are so bizarre that they defy reason.

William of Ockham, the noted English Philosopher and Logician born in Ockham England, propounded the great dictum now known as Ockham’s Razor: “When there are many versions of an explanation, the simplest is usually the correct one.” Conspiracy theories are noted for having convoluted explanations because such is necessary to overcome the simplest of explanations. The more convoluted the explanation, the more logical appears the conclusion. But we observe that those who propound conspiracy theories must also create information to support their theories. Unfortunately, the information is not fact or truth.

I am amazed at the conspiracy theorists concerning the collapse of the Twin Towers in NYC. The most logical conclusion of this most amazing collapse is totally explained by an analysis of how the buildings were constructed. It was a novel architectural concept. The Outer shell of the buildings was the major support structure. With the heat developing within the top floors the inside of each building collapsed into itself causing the outer support structure to fold into itself. Although this explanation has been given it has been downplayed, and I do not know w hy, except perhaps to prevent law suits, but let me not propose another conspiracy!

The conspiracy people are suggesting that the government conspired to bring the buildings down by controlled demolition. When a building is prepared for controlled demolition it takes a demolition company months to prepare a building after studying architectural plans to know where to place such charges. It is not an easy thing to do. It requires scientific study and execution. Just placing a bomb somewhere within a building would not bring it down. We can remember the tremendous bomb exploding in the basement garage of one of the Twin Towers several years ago. This massive explosion did not bring the building down. It would also require that the government knew before hand that planes would be flown into the Twin Towers so that they would know when the set off the demolition charges.

Some conspiracy theorists have suggested that what we all saw on television was contrived. They suggest the government somehow took over the television airways and substituted a tape showing planes flying into the buildings, but we are to believe that, although the planes flying into the buildings was contrived, the actual building collapsing was real. You now see what I mean when I say that much convoluted information must be created to support conspiracy theories.

If you observe individuals who propose conspiracy theories, they are really studies in bizarre behavior. The greatest of them all is Rosie O’Donnell. If there is a person more bizarre than she, I have yet to see her. Another is ex-professor Ward Churchill, a recently busted professor at the University of Colorado whose views on the 911 conspiracy makes one wonder about the University of Colorado credentials to be considered an institution of higher learning.

Recently, we heard of the Islamic father who executed his daughter in a so-called “Honor Killing” for leaving hey Islamic husband whom the father selected for her to marry when she was 18 and marrying another Islamic man of her choice. After overseeing his daughter being repeatedly raped by three other men while tied to a bed, he stomped on her head to force the devil out of her soul before finally garotting her to death. People believe in this crazy stuff. I never cease to be amazed at how bizarre, illogical, and just crazy information can be programmed into one’s mind.

Earlier today, police raided a home where a grandfather was torturing a young girl to get rid of the devil within her. In the same room was her naked mother chanting some bizarre chatter apparently to assist her father in what he was doing. When the police arrived, the man would not stop so that they had to apply a Tazer charge. As a result the man died. Good riddance. Send him off to the Soylent Green factory.

I saw on TV the other day where a man interviewed a group of Devil Worshipers. None of these individuals believed in God; they all believed in the Devil. Are these people real? I am afraid that they are!

How about the 70 virgins in heaven awaiting someone to kill others in the name of Allah; is this not bizarre? I can’t even take care of one virgin, if I can ever find one, never mind 70! Just a bit of politically incorrect humor. Sorry.

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

TREATING ESPIONAGE THE OLD FASHIONED WAY

TREATING ESPIONAGE THE OLD FASHIONED WAY

Yesterday, Oliver North in his War Stories program on Fox News Television related the story of 7 or 8 spies who were apprehended in 1942. A German U-Boat dropped off about 7 German spies somewhere on the shores of the Carolinas. These men tied up with an American citizen who was to assist them in some espionage work here in the US.

Eventually one of them, and I do not remember whether it was the US citizen alerted the authorities. Eventually all were apprehended and, since this happened on US soil they were not considered prisoners of war to be treated as such according to the Geneva Convention, but rather as spies. President Roosevelt decided to bring them before a military tribunal which convened in Washington, DC., something which had not occurred since Lincoln’s presidency.

Although one of the prisoners alerted the authorities and another cooperated fully in the trial, they were all found guilty and sentenced to death, I believe in the Electric Chair. President Roosevelt commuted the sentence of the informer to 30 years and the other who cooperated to life imprisonment. Within one week, the other men were executed. There were no long term appeals; they were summarily executed, as they should have been according to custom for individuals convicted of espionage.

Unfortunately, today this swift justice cannot occur. By the time slick lawyers get through with their appeals as the law allows them to do, years have gone buy and nothing gets done.

Just within the past week, a Taliban criminal who was know to have committed crimes on the battlefield of Afghanistan and had been imprisoned in Guantanamo but released several years ago to return to fighting in Afghanistan blew himself up as they were ready to recapture him again. Why was he allowed to go free in the first place? Essentially, we are unable to handle the enemy so they will not return to kill us again. As in my previous Blog, we are unable as a people to do the necessary things to win the war on terror. And as a consequence, we will be defeated by an enemy who has more guts than we.

What happened to the leaders like Roosevelt who know how to handle the ready present danger in a manner to insure the spies will not return to perform their dastardly espionage again.

And now for “The End of the Story:” President Truman commuted the sentences of the two men, one who got 30 years and the other who got life. After the war he released them and returned them to Germany. I never thought Truman was that smart. In my opinion he was the second worst president in my lifetime. President Carter definitely taking the first place in being the worst. Truman was never able to handle Stalin who made circles around him. Truman talked tough, but he was completely inept in world affairs and it was he who allowed the Iron Curtain to go up. The only contribution to the world lexicon was his famous request: “Oh, please give me a one armed economist.” The rest of his presidency was a disaster. Part of this was probably due to the fact that Roosevelt never clued him in to what was happening in the world. After Roosevelt’s death, those in the know had to inform Truman of the Manhattan Project – the creation of the atom bomb. He was completely unaware of the project while as Vice President.

I tend to digress. As I was saying, we need to develop a will to deal with espionage, traitors, and our enemies. Following this we need to put into place a plan of action to deal with these matters effectively to remove our enemies so that they will not return to commit the same crimes and to deter others from even trying.

But somehow, I do not believe we can do it. So hang on folks, it is going to be a very bumpy ride.

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

WE CAN NEVER WIN THE WAR ON TERROR

WE CAN NEVER WIN THE WAR ON TERROR

You heard it here, folks. Mohammed started a new religion and spread it throughout the Middle and Near East by using the sword. Boy, was he successful. Modern day Mohammeds are doing the same thing and they are also successful.

We are calling this modern day war “the war on terror.” And we are definitely losing this war because many do not recognize the problem exists even when and while the so-called Jihadists advertise that they wish to destroy us. Are we deaf? Are we stupid? Yes to both questions. In the US we have either two scenarios. First there are 50% who believe we have no problem; 50% who believe we do not. Or Second, there is 30% who believe we do, 30% who believe we do not, and 30% who do not have a clue. The first are awake, the second is sleeping, and the third, well, I do not know.

We have so many in the US who take the soft no problem position purely for political reasons. They hate the President. They see that the President is in a weak and embarrassing position because of the Iraq war and think by opposing the President they will eventually allow them to get to the top of the hill – that is the Presidency. I have discussed this problem before and this wanting to get to the top of the hill mentality is the reason why democracy will eventually fail, especially if we wish to win the war on terror.

Are we willing to do the necessary things to win this war? I am afraid not. But if we do, we will need to make the hard choices and to use the same weapons the Jihadists use on us and use these weapons on them – fear and annihilation.

I had been a conservative Republican all my life, but last year decided that neither US political party represented my views anymore. I became a Libertarian, not that they will ever win a major election in our country. The Media is so Democrat- and Republican-centric that they totally ignore all other parties. Even though the viewers who voted after the first Republican debate of Fox indicating that Ron Paul won the debate, Fox News kept saying that others had won. A similar voting at CNN indicated that Ron Paul won. This was subsequently ignored by the entire media. Do I make my point?

Well, here I am, now a Libertarian and I feel like St. John the Baptist who was described in the Bible as “a voice crying in the wilderness!” I admit that I was ignorant and did not know Ron Paul before the debate, but as I listened, I began to realize he was the only voice of reason. We have no business with our presence around the world. We should pack up our bags, come back home, and begin to take care of our own problems, and we have many.

On the other hand, if we wish to win the war on terror, I will give you the keys. First, how to stop the suicide bombers. I already told you that I had been a loyal conservative Republican my entire life since age 10. A friend of mine whom I would describe as a very liberal Democrat originally from Boston of all places gave me the key to eliminate suicide bombers. His suggestion was to completely annihilate the town from which the bomber came. Yes, you heard me: completely bomb and annihilate the home town of the bomber perhaps giving them 24 hours notice. In my opinion, we would have to do this only once.

Second, to stop the killing of Americans in Iraq, for each American killed completely destroy one mosque belonging to the perpetrators. Yes, you heard me again: “completely destroy, Imams and all who may be within, the mosques of the perpetrators.” Again for political correctness and in the spirit of American love and caring, give them 24 hours notice also. In this case we might have to destroy several mosques because our enemy here is so dumb, they might not get the message at first. But if they are dumb, we a dumber because we will not take the necessary measures. The bleeding heart liberals in the US are so dumb that they will sacrifice themselves and their neighbors for political correctness even in the ever present danger of our enemies. If these people were in power in the 1940's, we would still be fighting WWII.

Third, we should then get out of the Middle East and let the radical Moslems continue to kill each other as they have done for centuries. The Moslem world does not need Israel as an enemy, they do a good job killing themselves. If they want to kill themselves, why should we save them? We all know that salvation comes from within.

Many who read this Blog might consider what I say quite radical. But, believe me it is not. In some of the martial arts, one uses his enemy’s energy to defeat his enemy. Perhaps, we can learn from this discipline. We cannot save the rest of the world, especially when the rest of the world does not want to be saved.

This week in England, a father was convicted of brutally killing his own daughter in a so-called “honor killing,” because she left one Moslem husband selected by the father when she was 18 ears old to marry another Moslem man. The father oversaw his own daughter brutally raped repeatedly over a 2 hour period before garroting her to death with a boot strap. Before killing her, the father stomped on his daughter’s head to force her soul to exit. What can you do with ignorant people like this? They are beyond education and redemption. Might I remind you that England does not have a death penalty. And this together with their liberal attitudes are some of the reasons why they are also losing the war on terror.

Great Britain, the US, and the rest of the world should wake up to the threat of radical Jihadism and take real steps to stop them from achieving their intended goals and necessary for us to win.

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

THE CONSCIOUS MIND'S CONTROL OVER THE SUBCONSCIOUS MIND

THE CONSCIOUS MIND=S CONTROL OVER THE SUBCONSCIOUS MIND

Some years ago I wrote in my book How to Benefit from Stress some aspects about the differences between the conscious and subconscious mind. Although these two separate but intertwined aspects of our mind coexist within our brain, they can interact in ways most individuals do not appreciate. When I say conscious and subconscious mind I could just as easily say conscious and subconscious minds with emphasis on whether it is singular or plural.

Although we can look at these two entities as quite different, they are both different but yet the same. This might sound as mysterious as discussing the Trinity of The Deity with three Gods in One as Christians believe. Both are mysteries. I am not so smart as to know how to explain the Trinity of The Deity, but I will be bold and try to explain the two separate but one aspect of our minds.

As we explore the functioning of the brain and mind we must first define some terms. This is what I was taught in Philosophy and is would seem appropriate to begin this way. First, the brain is that physical part of our body in which the mind operates. The brain must be healthy for the brain to function properly, just as the hardware of a physical computer must be sound for the software programs to function. If there is a defect in the hardware, perhaps the hard drive or other part of the physical computer, the software programs will not function. And, so it is with the brain and its software which functions as the mind.

Second, the mind is that that ethereal entity which can best be described using the analogy of the computer as the software programming which depends, of course, upon the physical brain to function. As the brain can be seen as matter, the mind is energy.

We now know that thought can be the result of chemical reactions occurring within the brain. There are other chemicals, such as drugs which can severely interfere with the brain=s capacity to function properly to produce thought. Thinking is what the brain/mind complex is supposed to do. In order to produce thoughts and ideas which are real or can be transformed into real things, the brain must be sound and functioning. When the brain/mind creates meaningful thought, it is good. It is not so good when the brain/mind does not function properly.

Abnormal thinking can be quite destructive. If a person on LSD believes he can fly, try to fly and see how unreal and destructive that will be. Many, especially during the ‘60’s and ‘70’s when such drugs were popular, have succumbed to such a fate. So our thoughts must in a way reflect what can actually be in the physical reality. For it is with our minds that we create many aspects of our physical reality. Just thinks of our inventions of the automobile, airplanes, computers, cell phones, etc. These physical items once and initially existed as thoughts in an inventor=s mind. From the thought, the physical reality of the invention was created.


So here we are with a normal functioning brain capable of creating normal thought. And now we need to consider normalcy of the software and to insure that viruses do not exist which might interfere with the functioning of the software.

Under normal circumstances the conscious mind, mostly known to be situated in the cerebrum, the outer most part referred to as the grey matter controls most of what we do, especially when we are awake. With our conscious mind we decide to take control of the physical body. We decide to take a step and our body moves forward. We drive our car to the store to shop. Almost every aspect of movement of our physical body is controlled in some way by our conscious thinking. But as we are doing this our subconscious mind is working along with our conscious mind to make things happen. We decide to take a step which might have been initiated by the conscious mind, but the functioning of the subconscious mind takes over so we can automatically walk in a way without thinking. Yes, without the constant input of out conscious mind, our subconscious mind allows up to continue walking down the street almost effortlessly. By golly, we can walk and chew gum at the same time! Why? Because the conscious and subconscious minds are functioning in unison.

So while we are awake we can exert control over some aspects of the activity of our subconscious mind.

But there are other aspects of our subconscious mind over which we have little or no control, and thank God we don=t. These are the fully automatic beating of our heart, breathing, the gut functions of digestion and assimilation, movement of our eyes, etc. These functions are centered in another aspect of our physical brain, the so-called brain stem, the cerebellum, and limbic system of software. We can at times and with considerable training influence and control some of these automatic functions. An example would be the control over breathing some Yogis can accomplish through feats of intense meditation.

Also using our conscious mind we can voluntarily through hypnosis enter the subconscious state and prevent our body from experiencing pain. But these are extraordinary accomplishments not within our discussion today.


The main aspect of my discussion today regarding the relationship between the conscious and subconscious mind as it relates to behavior. Our behavior can be a function of our conscious mind when we decide to say to someone: AI like or love you@ or casual discussion in the office or at a bar after work. We might open the door for a lady, if that is still done these days. We can decide to talk with our boss to ask for a raise. Many daily behavior functions we decide to do can be mainly from conscious activity or , at least, initiated consciously.

Concentrating on the phrase AI love you,@ do you really? Wouldn=t you really like to know? Would the person to whom you are speaking really like to know? Or how about AI like my job.@ Do you really? Or do you deep inside, yes at the subconscious level B a level where you may not consciously be aware yourself B hate your job and coworkers and one day you will come in and kill others in your office and then yourself? If I was one of your coworkers, I would really like to know.

Eventually, it will be my purpose in this book to give you and the people around you the keys to discover what is really within the depths of your mind, for you and they would and should really like to know!

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

WOULDN'T YOU REALLY LIKE TO KNOW?

WOULDN’T YOU REALLY WANT TO KNOW?

You are in love with a wo(man) and this person says s(he) loves you. (I will use the "he" to refer to both sexes, for the principles are the same) Wouldn’t you really like to know whether he is telling you his real and true feelings? And, more importantly does he know what he really feels? Does he know what he is telling you is the truth? I would like to know whether the person who says he loves me really does.

You are now at your workplace and you have a boss, coworkers, and, perhaps, subordinates, if there are such persons existing today with all that politically correct crap where everybody is considered equal, and some of these people may be friendly, others you do not know how they feel about you, and still others who appear downright unfriendly and nasty to you. Wouldn’t you really want to know how and what they feel about you? I know I would. I would like to really know the people with whom I work and socialize.

You are living in a rather upscale community, perhaps a nice friendly neighborhood where you have many friendly neighbors. The man is your best friend, and you like his wife even better! He helps you plant a tree; you help him shovel his snow. Your family and his frequently go out to dinner in a nice restaurant. Your kids and theirs play together. Wouldn’t you really like to know his real feelings about you?

There was a friendly man next door. Everybody loved him because he was so friendly. He seemed not to have a mean bone in his body. He said “Hello” every morning as he went to work. But one day he killed his entire family: wife and children, even the one year old, then killed himself. Yesterday, I saw this very thing happened and reported on the TV. The man, supposedly a friendly man who was living in a home built by Habitat for Humanity.

Wouldn’t you really like to have known who this man really was? Wouldn’t you really like to have known whether warning signs existed? I would. And, perhaps, his wife and family would have.

I would like to know because I would want to know whether to keep these individuals at arms length or closer. We should always remember the famous advice given by The Godfather: “ Keep your friends close, but keep your enemies closer.” Where did Mario Puzo get such wisdom?

In my up and coming book Wouldn’t You Really Like to Know? I will try to elaborate on ways of determining the answers to this question and the questions I posed above. I will give excerpts in my Blog as I go along but will compile all of what I learned in the final volume.

From where I stand today,

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.

Director, Tauraso Medical Clinic

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

IS THE INTERNET MAKING US STUPID?

IS THE INTERNET MAKING US STUPID?

I just saw an interview where someone was saying that the internet is making us stupid. To many this may sound ridiculous, but I could not agree with this individual more.

Do not get me wrong, the internet can be a very valuable tool, but in many regards and as with everything in life it is how one uses the internet which can make it either a valuable tool or a source of misinformation.

There is a lot of crap and junk on the internet. Case in point: very early at about 3:00 this morning, I was searching the internet to find information on passports. I came across a link which promised to give you the passport information of anyone in the world. They advertised on the first page that there were 9 billion passports issued and that in 2003 an international agreement was signed which requested that every country issuing passports to submit the names to a world wide registry. It sounded too good to be true and you know what the rest of that saying is.

It took a very long time to download the site and what would you expect? Reasonably, it would take a long time to download 9 billion records, so I waited over 20 minutes. Finally it was completely downloaded and I submitted my name. What came up could have been anticipated. Remember the completion of the saying “if it is too good to be true,” before me was the first page of my passport with my name and an official number, but the picture was not of me. It was a picture of a chimpanzee. Below was written” did you really think you could get a copy of one’s passport on the internet?”

What gets me is that someone went through a lot of trouble and expense to create this rather complicated internet site. And for what? It was a joke of completely worthless information. And there are many such sites.

How do you really know whether the information you requested is accurate and correct? Do you know the credentials of the writer or the group sponsoring the site? When you go to my internet site: www.drtauraso.com, on the left side there is a link to my credentials: Dr. Tauraso’s Curriculum Vitae. So you know who I am and what my credentials are. But then the only question you need to ask is: “Do I know what I am talking about?” Good luck answering that!

I use the internet to gather information from what I believe are credible sources and I help my children learn buy helping them do the same.

Another great problem I have experienced is when I do an internet search, up comes many sites with the information I requested in the initial link, but when I select the link, nowhere is there any information related to what I asked and nothing resembling what was in the link itself. It is a scam to get you to visit an erroneous site. This is the most frequent problem I experience when doing a Google search.

When I went to school, in the early grammar school years, then in Prep

School, and later in college, I was very fortunate in having received a very

good education. I was fortunate in having attended schools whose philosophy was to teach you how to think. I like to tell the story about an English Jesuit Professor who each week had us memorize poetry, and we were tested. The first poem we were given had 15 lines and it took me the entire evening to memorize it. I thought this professor was off the deep end and I could not see what all this memorizing had to do with learning English.

On the last day of class it was all revealed. The last poem we had to memorize was Francis Thompson’s “The Hound of Heaven,” – all 183 lines of it. The entire class, one by one, had to stand up and recite the poem from memory, of course. I memorized the poem in one evening. At the end the Professor told us he really cared less about the poems he asked us to memorize throughout the year. He posed to us a question. He asked whether we agreed that the 183 lines of Francis Thompson’s poem were easier to memorize than had been the first poem of 14 lines. The entire class agreed. And this was the “method of his madness.” As we ended that day in class, I appreciated for the first time the genius of my professor. He was really one of the greats at Boston College.

Both Prep School and College were places where I was taught and learned the discipline of using my brain and mind for the purposes of thinking. Where and when the internet is used for such purposes it will be a force of learning this art. As adults who teach our children, we must teach them the art of learning. With this comes the art of discerning how to get information and how to decipher that what we are getting is accurate and real.

About video games, many are mind-sucking inventions of the game creators. These are to be avoided. Good luck. Others are actually good mind training games which encourage the young player to create. These must be sought out. Monitor what your children are doing with their computers and let us not forget their cell phones which the youth are using more and more these days for communication and learning.

Those of us with children have the responsibility to teach them properly on how they can develop their minds to think – the art of creating thoughts and transforming these thoughts into useful items to be used in the world for the betterment of mankind.

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.

Director, Tauraso Medical Clinic

US BLACKS ARE GOING NOWHERE

US BLACKS ARE GOING NOWHERE

And they never will as long as they have leaders such as Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, two of the worst kind of demagogues leading their people into the cesspool of nowhere. What have these charlatans done for their Black constituents and where do they hope to lead them? Let us first look at the past.

The Tiwana Brawley Affair:

We can examine what these leaders have done is by examining a typical case in point. The first case is that of Al Sharpton’s defense in the Tiwana Brawley case. In this case a young Black girl falsely accused two white policemen of raping her. Immediately Jackson and Sharpton led a massive protest against the police. After it was discovered that Tiwana Brawley made up the whole story because she feared retribution from her father for coming home late, Jackson and Sharpton continued leading a significant portion of the community against the white policemen costing these unfortunate policemen considerable amounts of money in their legal defense. In this situation the immoral tactics of both Jackson and Sharpton were revealed. These two so-called leaders seized and used the initial event to their own political ends. They lead their people into the quagmire of the sewer and further destroy any credibility for their causes. In light with what happened and the eventual outcome and exoneration of the policemen, Sharpton still maintains the morality of what he had done. If this is morality, let us inform Merrium-Webster to change their definition of the word.

The Duke-La Cross Case

A second case in point is again the same two charlatans leading the community against the Duke University La Cross players who were accused of raping a black stripper invited to dance at one of their frat houses, admittedly a bad decision by them in the first place. After the smoke cleared, and it was determined that the stripper lied and the players exonerated, these same two leaders not only have not apologized but also have refused to do so for their incitement of the community.

The OJ Simpson Murder Case:

Can anyone ever forget the OJ Simpson case when a mostly Black jury could not bring themselves to convict a man who was so obviously guilty of the crime of having brutally murdered two individuals. The entire world community was convinced of OJ’ guilt, except for the Black community who are blind to sins of their own.

Unless and until the Black community sees justice as most Americans do they will never truly arrive.

The average Black Leader of which both Jackson and Sharpton are only two seem to desire to defend every crime committed by anyone in the Black community. These same two are so eager to jump on any bandwagon ready to cast aspersions on whites thought of committing similar crimes or even minor infractions.

Unless the Black community rises up and casts away those charlatan leaders they will never be accepted by the rest in America. The Blacks originally came from Africa where there exist more crimes against humanity than most other places in the world. The present two leaders are catapulting their own people back to the depths of the worst of African behavior. These two individuals especially should be shunned by the Black community for they really are promoting their own selfish agenda under the guise of being virtuous.

This reminds me of what the Jesuits once taught me in college: “Beware of the sins committed under the guise of virtue.” My retort one day to my professor was: “You guys ought to know. You ran the Spanish Inquisition!” His response to me was: “Yes, Nick, we know, but we are trying to forget that.” He was an honest Jesuit. In fact as a side note I admired the Jesuits for they taught me the disciplines of thinking and logic and they were always willing to take on everyone, especially young arrogant students like myself. And they did this without rancor but in the “spirit of The Argument.”

To return to the issue at hand, the average Black has followed almost blindly the tenets of the Democratic Party who have taken them for granted and have used them like pawns. My advice to the Black community is to try the Republican Party for 20 years and see where this takes them. But will they? They probably will not, because habits are difficult to change, unfortunately. There are a few Black Leaders who can take them there but, as yet, they are considered like St. John the Baptist – you know that guy in the New Testament who was described as “a voice crying in the wilderness.”

The likes of the Jacksons and the Sharptons should be sent to the outhouse and flushed down to the depths from which they came spewing forth hatred, divisiveness, and fear of their neighbor, pitting one against the other. These men call themselves “Reverends,” but are they really? They do not preach love of fellow man. They are more like the radical Imams who preach their own brand of religion of hate and revenge. These things do not bode well for their parishioners.

As I see it today, “Soon the chupacabras!”

nicola michael Tauraso, M.D.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

PANAMANIAN PRISONS

PANAMANIAN PRISONS

One does not want to be in a Panamanian prison! In previous Blogs I indicated that Panama is a safe place to live, and it is, but this is not to say there are no criminals here. And many of them are in prison. One does not usually read about these things in the travel brochures but it is a part of the Panamanian landscape – a story which should be told.

Today I visited a Panamanian prison, called here a penitentiary. I visited a friend who was arrested one month ago for a very foolish reason. My friend is a tour guide who brings tourists around entire Panama.

Apparently, and I emphasize apparently, because thus far I have heard three different versions of the story of what happened and today I expect to hear yet another version (which by the way I eventually did – You know how these things work) one day my friend was asked by someone to take him from Panama City to Colon, a trip of about 1-1.5 hour drive usually costing about $50.00. How do you like that last sentence? It could well be one resembling German construction. While on his way to Colon or when he arrived there, he was stopped by the police who confiscated the client’s suitcase containing 5 million dollars. My friend had $2,000 in his pocket, money similar to what was in the suitcase, probably in $100 bills. A common Panamanian usually does not have that amount of money in his pockets. He told the police the money was the proceeds from selling his car. Since he could not provide proof and since the story was a bit incredulous, he was imprisoned.

Prison is a tough place, 800+ individuals in the penitentiary I was visiting. At one time while outside the prison I heard the prisoners singing. I was told they were singing in the church within the prison. Outside in front of the prison there was a large statue of Jesus Christ with arms outstretched as if welcoming individuals to enter.

Parenthetically, and perhaps sarcastically, I have for sometime believed that Christ lives in prisons, not the churches. What else could one assume when so many individuals find Christ in prison. I know this may sound sarcastic as I said but let’s be real here.

There are about 60 people waiting in line to visit 800 prisoners. Considering there can be up to 2 individuals visiting one prisoner, there are many not being visited. What a lonely place!

During my lifetime I have been fortunate not to have known many who were in jail. I will relate the two times I visited prison. Once I visited an ex waitress who previously worked in my restaurant. She apparently attempted to engineer the murder of another girlfriend of her boyfriend. No one in my restaurant thought she was capable of such a thing. I could not believe it. But, there she was convicted. You never know as The Shadow would say “what evil lurks in the hearts of men” – but a woman at this time!

Another time I visited a homeless man whom I believed was imprisoned unjustly because he used to sit on a bench across the street from the main Post Office and the post Office authorities did not like for him to sit there.

I talked with this man for 30 minutes as I thought I might be able to help him. He just sat there looking at the floor motionless. Finally I asked him whether he would like a job in my restaurant. All of a sudden he exhibited signs of life. Looking up at me he said: “no way!” At that point, I left thinking the man was where he ought to be or supposed to be. After all, I am not the God of Infinite Wisdom and Patience. I am just another very human traveling on Planet Earth.

I got unwanted press at the time with a story in the local paper: “Dr. Tauraso visits homeless man in prison.” I did not tell anyone what I was doing, but the local newspaper was publishing a story about this man almost daily. He had become a celebrity, about his sitting daily on the bench across the street from the main Post Office until they put a stop to this, and one time the man was found urinating on someone’s front yard. So what, dogs do it, cats do it. They are truly free. But a human? That is a no no. But with this celebrity status of this homeless man, When I visited him, it also became front page news. Eventually, the man found his way to Sykesville State Hospital and, after medicating him for schizophrenia, where he became quite normal, until about a year later he reverted to his old ways because he stopped taking his medicines. Life is complicated! Is that not the truth.

Back to the Panamanian prison, we were supposed to be there at one P.M., but as everything else in Panama they opened for visitors late. Apparently, there was a problem within the prison, a riot perhaps, that required partial lock down. This prison was big, about a city block square.

Finally they let 30 people through the gate and we were asked to stand together in an area to the left. Since I had number 22, I entered with the first wave. I was told by a friend who accompanied me to leave my watch, ring, eyeglasses and penknife in my vehicle. Most of us were women with plastic bags of food and other sundry items. I saw one woman with a roll of toilet paper and a disposable razor, but most of the bags were filled with food. A uniformed guard directed the women to a table where the contents of their bags were inspected for the first time. I was asked by the chief guard to enter the small kiosk where the guard had been standing issuing numbers. He checked my passport and pensionado ID card and directed me to empty the contents of my pockets on the table, which I did. He told me to put my hat in my car, and he proceeded to inspect my wallet. There were 7 $20 bills which he told me I could not bring into the prison so I gave the money to my friend through the open window of the kiosk. The guard did not care about the 20 $1.00 bills, only the 20's.

He then directed me to spread eagle my legs. Placing both hands up and down my legs high up into my crotch. They had no hi tech electronic wands or devices. It was quite an experience. As directed, I proceeded to another holding area and after another 30 minutes another armed guard dressed in black, the others were in dark tan uniforms, sat at a table at the beginning of a very long outdoor corridor. He recorded my Passport number in a book and stamped the back of my hand. Only men had their hands stamped. I felt either special or that I had been profiled. But who cares. In such events one keeps his mouth shut and does what he is told.

Finally after waiting another 10 minutes at the end of this long corridor up the stairs and into the building we went into another holding area on the second floor. The women with plastic bags stood in one area until they were summoned to a table were each plastic container was carefully examined for the second time, opened and probed to insure there were no contraband items within the containers. Women had to line up on one side of a long table and I, the only man there at the time, was asked to stand on the other side. Every so often three women were summoned by a female guard who took them through a door which turned out to be a bathroom. Eventually, I was summoned by a male guard and was directed into another door adjacent to the one the women entered. My door was labeled men’s room, theirs was the ladies’ room. Once within the room I had to empty my pockets again. They confiscated my car keys giving me a numbered stub in return.

I thought Homeland Security at the US airports were thorough, but entering a Panamanian penitentiary was something else. I was not asked to take off my shoes. Did you know that ONLY in the US does one have to take their shoes off before going through airport security? I once boarded a Panamanian plain to go to one of the islands. Although I should have known better, I had a penknife which they confiscated giving me a ticket stub. At the end of the trip, my knife was returned to me. I thought that was a kind gesture. Don’t expect that to happen in the US.

Accompanied by my friend’s mother and girlfriend, mother of his child, I saw my friend who did appear fine and happy to see us. He lives in a cell with about 8 individuals and one toilet. He likes his cell mates and many of them share the food they get from their relatives and one different person takes turns cleaning the cell including the toilet. I bought a quart of pineapple and two pints of apple juice for $1.50. I was thirsty. We were all in a very large room, about 100 feet square, which they called a “block.” It was warm but not hot. There were many prisoners there representing all colors and ethnic backgrounds, reasonably so because people who get into trouble with the law represent a cross section of the general population. My friend seemed happy and vowed not to get in similar trouble again. This man is a happy man who does not have a mean bone in his body, but he made a mistake, and he, unfortunately, made the mistake in Panama. Because he lacks money and resources, we do not know how long he will be processed through the court system. He may be there for months. We are trying to secure his early relief, but here in Panama, the wheels of justice move very slowly, except, of course, if you have money. The world is the same all over, isn’t it?

Other than the above, life in Panama is good and I love it here.

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.