Thursday, July 20, 2017

Nigerians’ Departure, Honduran Visitors, Friend’s 70th Birthday, Book Translation, Etc.

I put the photo of me wearing my Honduras Peace Corps t-shirt next to an airplane seatmate wearing his Panama PC shirt on LinkedIn and it has had over 7,000 views there—never expected it to be an internet sensation. Here it is again. 

Photos above refer to a 600-page book I am translating from Spanish to English for a friend. The intact published Spanish version is on the floor, but I also have loose pages from the book. Each time I've translated both sides of a page, I throw it on the floor to make me feel like I'm progressing.
Below: I had two summer visitors from Honduras, Gustavo, the judge from Choluteca in my Honduras Peace Corps book (Triumph & Hops: Golden Years with the Peace Corps in Honduras), and his wife.

Haruna, one of my GAO visitors, had to leave early, but Stephen (above) stayed until the end and got his certificate of completion. A GAO friend and his wife and I joined him for lunch at a local eatery the day before his departure. I miss both Stephen and Haruna, but am enjoying a sort respite from visitors.

Above, my friend Pam's 70th birthday--she gave me permission to post photos. Her husband roasted a whole pig for the occasion and her daughter, shown with her on the left, 2 photos up, came out from California for the occasion. (It's a milestone I've long since passed.)

Short, cogent article below about Trump’s war on the press. Berating the press is not only a favorite form of protection or denial for Trump, but is part of keeping up his image of a being combative tough guy.

Rumor has it that Trump wants to buy TIME magazine—then he can put a bona fide heroic photo of himself on the cover!

One has to wonder if cancellation of the longstanding plan to move FBI headquarters to a new location was retaliation for FBI investigation, current and future, into Trump’s affairs?

It’s so sad that the fluke of Trump’s election has ushered in a government of blatant cruelty, stinginess, and greed, a malignant government, whatever the issue or policy. What hurts me most is the cruelty of deportation orders—Iraqi Christians, a 20-year Mexican coffee farmer deported from Kona in Hawaii, and the parents of four American teen and preteen siblings living in San Diego, leaving them to fend for themselves. If it’s not broken, why break it? Why deliberately disrupt lives for no good reason? Common sense, fairness, nuance, are simply not applied by either Jeff Sessions or Donald Trump. They are impervious to appeals to empathy, an emotion with which they apparently lack, except when it comes to the Trump family, which is accorded all sorts of protections and perks.

As for Obamacare’s failure, Trump can take steps to make that happen. Already, all the uncertainty is riling the healthcare market.

Texas U.S. Representative Bill Flores, a Republican now in his fourth term in the state’s 17th District, told a local CBS affiliate that Trump’s children, as well as his son-in-law, should be bounced from the White House. A good idea!

Honduras is on "red alert" over the number of women being murdered, according to the country's rights activists. Members of 20 different women's groups have banded together to highlight the problem, saying at least 18 women were killed in the past two weeks. The organizations say out of 463 women murdered last year, only 15 cases were investigated. The country's overall murder rate is down, according to official statistics. The state figures, released this week, show the total murders fell by 22% in the first six months of this year. The government says it is making progress and is working to reduce violence across the country

My friend and former housemate, a water specialist on contract with USAID, was off to the Congo where many unfortunate South Sudan refugees have fled and need clean water in the refugee camps. Of course, like all good things, including Peace Corps, Trump’s budget wants to cut USAID and foreign aid to give tax cuts to the upper brackets.

AI  issued an Urgent Action for our Turkey director:

Our organization also issued two new UAs for Cuban prisoners:

However, we just got word that the three siblings below have been released

Panama offers Cuban migrants a ticket to Havana and $1,650 each. Most don’t want to return there.

I dreamt about my late son Andrew, who died in 2004. I was surprised to have him show up after so many years. He said he had been living and working in California and would be moving back to our area, which pleased me. My daughters still have pieces of his clothing,

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