Sunday, September 27, 2009



By Kevin Stoda, Wiesbaden, Gemany

(whose foreign born wife has not been able to enter Germany for 10 months—even though EU law gives her the right to come here)

I was bicycling on the Rhine River yesterday afternoon and stopped in the beautiful town of Eltville .

All along the way between Wiesbaden and Ruedesheim, I had observed signs of hard-working and friendly peoples who did not look particularly German (i.e. light colored skin and European face and hair shades). For example, there were well-integrated Asian and African faces speaking to their kids in German in several of the places I was at, including the café I relaxed at.

In Eltville, I had stopped at a café in order to enjoy a cappuccino and poppy-seed cake. I picked up the local monthly paper (September 2009), the RHEINGAU. On p. 5 of the RHEINGAU was an article entitled “WE NEED EVERY CHILD”. The subtitle read: “What will happen when we are 125 years old?”

The story included a short summary of a presentation from a demographer, Dr. Winfried Koesters, to several regional working groups in the Rheingau region. The main points of Koesters provocative discussion were that with new medicine and better models of living a more productive (and long ) life, Germans needed to consider what the country’s actual needs would be if and when the average age of the elderly were to reach 125.

The article shared important and interesting data, such as how the country needed not only care givers but trained specialists and lifelong learners and helpers to confront the challenge of an aging population. “For example, the 80,000 Germans leaving school with no diploma each year was obviously contrary to the needs of society.” Dr. Koesters pointed out.

The tiny European state of Andorra already finds itself with the average age of life expectancy to have long since passed 80. Several other European states are nearly that far along.

Koesters addressed 4 areas that were of concern to the Rheingau residents. Committees in Rheingau, by the way, already exist. These committees are looking into these following 4 areas in order to plan for better and greater development in Germany .

These four research questions to the Rheingau communities are:

(1) “How can the elderly choose to be more active in society and life?”

(2) “How can we promote more attractive villages and towns—and the multiple faces of the region?”

(3) “What new models of living in homes and community need to be developed?”

(4) “Do you just live here or do you do more than that?

All of these research queries require more participation by an increasingly larger number of younger citizens and residents.

Obviously, as the older generations are increasing in population numbers, people of all generations will need to learn to get along with one another and help one another more. So, I would recommend that one point, which is not clearly on the Rheingau agenda, be included: the role of the non-German born person and their families. In short, this query of mine refers to the common German problem of the last centuries, i.e. in its failure to integrate more foreigners into local and national community.

Most worrisome has been the recent firm EU backlash against foreigners and a growing resistance to properly integrate foreigners more fully. Germany is not the only culprit, though, the entire European continent has built a fortress around itself in the last decades—even as demographers have cried out that closing the doors on new immigration and underfunding integration efforts is a NO-GO.

This EU (and German) ideology against fuller integration of foreigners is a very self-destructive position because many foreigners, taking Italy for example, already fulfill the role of care giver for the aged. For example, Italy ’s newest laws cracking down on illegals last year has intentionally exempted those illegals who are undertaking housekeeping and care-giver roles.


On Friday, September 24, Andrea Boehm published a very well researched article entitled WILLKOMMEN IN EUROPA in the newspaper, DIE ZEIT. In her piece, Boehm charges that “EU States are doing everything they can to scare away refugees.” Moreover, “They let refugees drown right before European eyes on a regular basis.”

Boehm also explains that the anti-illegal hysteria in Europe has been overblown by almost every European state—including Germany —over the past decade.

Boehm cited the HWWI’s ( Hamburg World Economic Research Institute) Dita Voegel who stated in her project “Clandestine”: Voegel stated, “The Germany has been claiming that there are between half a million to one million illegal immigrants, however, the HWWI has found evidence of only 200- to 400,000 within German borders. Similarly, the European Union has been claiming that there from 4.5 to 8 million illegals within EU borders but HWWI has demonstrated that there is as low as 2.8 million” illegals in Europe currently.

Boehm contrasted that with South Africa alone, which supports 7 million illegals (many of them refugees from Zimbabwe ) currently.

In short, Europe is not being overrun to the extent that it has feared and “the Fortress Europe” mentality and Europe´s manner of kicking out refugees and would-be immigrants (or letting them drown at sea) is a poor way to proceed economically and social these days.

The crack down on foreigners in Germany in recent years has led to a decline in foreigners living within German borders for the first time in decades. It has also reduced the numbers of applicants to come to Germany significantly. (Meanwhile, in Greece , the largest concentration camps have been set up at the lowest possible standards. Greece has done this because Germany and other states are not helping it out and many immigrants now come through Turkey or across the Mediterranean to Athens .)




By Kevin Anthony Stoda, Hessen, Germany

On the eve of the German national elections on Sunday September 27, 2009, Michael Moore opened his new movie: “CAPITALISM´: A LOVE STORY”.

THE NEW YORK TIMES says of the film, “In many ways, . . . this is Moore 's magnum opus: the grandest statement of his career-long belief that big business is screwing the hard-working little guy while government connives in the atrocity. . . . so in Capitalism he attempts to make a citizen's arrest of AIG executives, and puts tape around the New York Stock Exchange building, declaring it a crime scene.”

I think some Europeans might like to see the AIG executives arrested as Michael Moore suggested in the film. AIG’s collapse last year broke banks all over Europe . As a result, this very year, despite predictions for two decade that the real progressive left in Europe’s days were (over) or numbered, the leftist parties in Europe including THE LEFT party in Germany and the PIRATE party across Europe are becoming more and more acceptable to voters—even as the traditional ruling parties are forced to join forces to beat back rise of the Left.

In short, the words of Michael Moore are acceptable to a rising number of European citizens.

On Democracy Now, Michael Moore said on Thursday, “We need to quit having the argument about the economic system that was invented in the sixteenth century versus the one that was invented in the nineteenth century. We need to—come on, we’re smart people. We’re in the twenty-first century. We have a whole new set of issues and problems that we face. Can’t we come up with an economic order that has these two basic underpinnings: that it is run democratically and that it is run with a sense of ethics and morality? So, whatever we construct, for me, personally, it has to have those two things in its foundation.”

Unity seems to be easy for those on the far left in Germany these days. .

THE LEFT party, led by a partnership of former East and West German leadership is expected to receive nearly 12 or 13% of the vote in the national elections in Germany on Sunday. Eastern Germany ’s Gregor Gysi “said it (the elections September 2009) was more important to fight for the rights of the people than against opponents within the party. Lafontaine stressed that the relatively small Left party, by standing up for working people, pensioners and students had forced the other parties to take positions well to the left of what they once advocated, while the Social Democrats and Greens unblushingly opposed the same anti-social measures they had themselves introduced when they formed the government – like cutting aid to the jobless, raising retirement age from 65 to 67, radically cutting taxes on the big corporations and the super wealthy, and sending soldiers off to war despite the German constitution. Their current election promises were caused by their great fear of any growth of the Left.”

There are actually supposedly two or three clearly leftist parties in Germany , who have been in government in recent years.

There are THE LEFT, THE GREENS, and the center-left SPD (Socialist Part of Germany).

The SPD has been leading the German government in coalition with other parties for over a decade in Germany . The SPD is currently still heading the government with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU-CSU alliance (a center right party). However, in the run-up to this year’s elections the SPD has been running as low as 20% in recent state elections.


Historically speaking, this current split among the leftist parties harks back to the 19th century in Germany when the Socialists and Communists could not get along. Moreover, until 1875 there were actually two SPD parties in Germany . 1875 was the first time when the USPD (United Social Party of Germany) joined the SPD in a permanent agreement.

Franz Walter notes concerning modern German history, “But the sharp disagreements between the parliamentary groups and extreme wings of the party continued. In 1917 it reached the point where another split was inevitable. The USPD (German Independent Social Democratic Party) was founded, and in the years of revolution from 1918 to 1920 the social democratic workers of both party blocs gunned each other down in murderous brawls. It was largely because of this that the USPD in Germany gave birth to the largest communist party outside of Russia .”

Similarly, in Germany over the past two years, the SPD and THE LEFT have joined on occasion in coalitions—(and sometimes with the Greens, too)—at the state level ad city level of governance.

However, at the national level, there is no unifying forces currently in Germany for uniting the left because the former SPD-Green Coalition under Chancellor Schroeder had bowed too often to more conservative and neo-liberal tendencies in the late 1990s and early part of this decade.

Walter adds, “The army of the long-term unemployed (in Germany ) no longer feel connected to today’s upwardly mobile SPD.”

From the 1980s and 1990s onwards, the problem was that the SPD was continually alienating the progressives, who had been the backbone of the party for decades. The modern SPD is now seen as a party “which feels no cultural affinity with the new upwardly mobile SPD, has turned in part to the Left Party. This was dramatically demonstrated in the Saarland state elections on 30th August.” On that day only a little over 20% of the voters in Saarland had chosen the SPD, whereby they used to run the state only a decade or so ago totally by themselves.

The Western German leader of THE LEFT, Oscar Lafontaine, has actually dominated the SPD political landscape for four decades. He left the SPD party about 5 years ago to unite with former communists of Eastern German and younger progressives from across Germany . Walter writes the following praise of Lafontaine:

“Lafontaine is undoubtedly one of the most hated politicians in Germany : but what is equally clear is that he has achieved more, and pushed more political issues up the agenda, than most of his opponents. But what is he really after? Is it all a campaign to destroy the social democrats, by whom he feels betrayed and abandoned? Or is he seeking to unify the left, creating a new socialist unity party for our times, so to speak – but this time on a voluntary basis?”

Moreover, says Walter, “There is no doubt that Lafontaine is one of the few true strategic thinkers in German politics. He starts thinking from where he wants to end up, and not from the situation where he is now. 2013 is surely going to be a crucial year for him. By then the political landscape of the Federal Republic will have to be gradually reordered. From his perspective a national CDU/FDP coalition might not be at all a bad thing for an ongoing change of government in the German states, paving the way for a coalition of left-wing parties in Berlin, in the Saarland, in Thuringia, in Brandenburg, later on in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – and who knows, in North Rhine-Westphalia in May 2010?”

Some predict that Lafontaine will destroy the SPD of today.

However, THE LEFT is apparently becoming successful simply by being more factual and to-the-point than the other major and more centrist or traditional parties in Germany .

The BBC notes, “While Germany 's larger parties have kept their election promises frustratingly vague - with slogans like `Confidence´ (the Christian Democrat CDU) and "Our Country Can Do More" (the Social Democrat SPD), by contrast the Left has been far more specific. `German Troops out of Afghanistan ,´ says one poster on the square; ´Tax Wealth` says another. `No to Nuclear Power,` another. And there are leaflets entitled: "More money for Education, Less for the Banks."

The BBC summarized the point by quoting several political commentators: For example, "I think it's a very successful campaign to use these concrete slogans," says political commentator Michael Weidemann. "Many people who are not close to the Leftists might vote for them. Because they are the only party which acts this way."

PERHAPS, MICHAEL MOORE COULD TAKE OVER for the Left and United the disparate forces today?

As the title of this article suggests, Michael Moore of the USA is also a strategic thinker and critique of capitalism of 2009 and is seriously calling for change—not just in his homeland: the USA .

For this reason, Germans who are tired of capitalism as usual, might invite Michael Moore to lead a coalition of the major three left parties in Germany .

For an example of Moor´s rhetoric, the day his new film on Capitalism opened in New York , Moore stated unequivocally that CAPITALISM of 2009 (as it is now) needs to be suspect and forced to reform. Moore say it is simply a big Pansy or pyramid scheme for the elite (and the very lucky) or well-connected.

Speaking on inequality and lack of access to good loan conditions and livelihood for the vast majority, Moore stated “There’s the larger crime, though, of course, of how the pie is divided in this country. And the fact that one guy can come to the table and take nine slices of that pie and leave one slice for everyone else at the table to fight over, that is criminal. That is offensive on so many levels. If we say we believe in democracy, it’s offensive on that level. If you have any kind of moral or ethical code that you live by, whether it’s because of your religion or your own spirituality or just because you know right from wrong, anyone, anyone over seven years old, maybe even a few five- and six-year-olds, know that if one guy takes nine slices of the pie and leaves one slice for everybody else, that’s just inherently wrong. And we allow that to happen.”

Two to three times as many Germans do not own their own homes—as compared to those who live in the UK or USA

Moore’s is the kind of logic that has brought the new LEFT in Germany into the position of forcing changes in federal and state governments over the past few years.

Moore has called for Americans to create a ruckus: “Well, I’m very clear in the film that, you know, I’m not an economist. But the alternative, the economic order that we need to create for the twenty-first century—and that’s what we really need to do. We need to quit having the argument about the economic system that was invented in the sixteenth century versus the one that was invented in the nineteenth century. We need to—come on, we’re smart people. We’re in the twenty-first century. We have a whole new set of issues and problems that we face. Can’t we come up with an economic order that has these two basic underpinnings: that it is run democratically and that it is run with a sense of ethics and morality? So, whatever we construct, for me, personally, it has to have those two things in its foundation.”

Moore could call German progressives to act, too—and as a newcomer, he would not be seen as a traitor to the SPD and the Progressive front as Lafontaine is.

In America , Moore wisely pointed out on DEMOCRACY NOW last week that the FBI has already noted that most of the financial fraud an foreclosures in America are the result of criminal incompetence and criminal activity of bankers.

Therefore, where are the government investigators at the crime scenes across America ?

In Germany , the new LEFT asks the same question.

Moore ’s exact quote is more noteworthy than that. Moore asks legitimate questions about AIG and Goldman Sachs and how they and other financiers have forced America , Germany and numerous other lands around the globe to throw out billions of taxpayer billions on banking firms over the past year.

Moore stated in the DN interview: “But now the FBI has said that this mortgage fraud, that 80 percent of it—80 percent of it—was caused by the banks and the lending—other lending institutions, mortgage companies, etc., not the people. Eighty percent of it. And the number one reason, it turns out, that people lose their homes is because of medical bills. It’s the number one cause of foreclosure and the number one cause of bankruptcies in this country. And we’re at a point right now where one in eight homes are either in delinquency or foreclosure, homes with mortgages, and there’s a foreclosure filing in this country once every seven-and-a-half seconds. Every seven-and-a-half seconds there’s a foreclosure filing in this country. I mean, this is a crisis.”

That is robbery and the LEFT in Europe are demanding that those who profit by capitalism and financial crime pay for the debt they have caused nationally and internationally! Will Americas do the same?


Moore added during the DN interview, “You know, I can’t stand the nightly news with that Dow Jones average they always show to report how well the wealthy are doing on Wall Street and how it’s climbing every day, etc., etc., and there’s never any indicators about what’s happening to people in their daily lives, the bulk of the people in this country, the 14,000 yesterday who lost their health insurance and the 14,000 who will lose their health insurance today and tomorrow and the day after that. Where’s that index? Wouldn’t that be great to see that on the nightly news each night, where before cutting to commercial break we list the number of people who lost their homes today, lost their jobs today, lost their health insurance today, people who died today because they didn’t have health insurance? You know, these statistics are readily available, so this isn’t just rhetoric. I mean, these are actually proven facts. And they could report that every night.”

I can’t stand that either. Can you?

Luckily, many Germans are turning again towards unions and real union parties to get support. They also have better media sources, i.e. many progressive organizations have produced their own news stories for years.

The growth in this media savvy young voting population in recent years has brought the new LEFT success and will continue to do so.

Progressive parties; alliences, and personages in Germany would certainly agree with Moore´s other comments on the failure of big media and publicly run media.

The media focuses on Wall Street or the German DAX stock exchange daily but not on people and those who cannot afford homes and are losing their jobs. “Instead, they (the national media)—you know, they’re there to report on what benefits those in power, and they go to places of power to cover that, but what they consider power. But the actual power, the way this country’s set up, is you and me, everyone listening and watching, everybody else who’s not listening and watching. The power is supposed to be with us, but we rarely, rarely, rarely hear our stories being covered by the media, other than in your column, on your show here, and a few other places.”

Another pair of leftist parties on the ticket in Germany elections this autumn 2009 in Hessen include: The Movement for Citizen Solidarity (Bueso).,0,B%fcSo.html

This party (Bueso) focuses on international solutions to the crises through people-to-people developments across borders. In addition, there is also the strictly Marxist-Leninist party (MLPD) that is putting its signs up all over Wiesbaden .

There is also the liberal-progressive party, THE PIRATES, which might take more votes than expected on September 27.

If none of them succeeds, perhaps, they could ask Michel Moore to join their campaigns in the future. He sure understands media and speaks their language: Progressive and leftist language.


Saturday, September 26, 2009

REAMONN, MARIA VICTORIA, and I—More than a Millions Miles from You

REAMONN, MARIA VICTORIA, and I—More than a Millions Miles from You

By Kevin Stoda, Wiesbaden , Germany (Marktplatz)

I am not sure why Wiesbaden has so many good free concerts—except that it is an expensive city, the capital of the state of Hessen, and has a lot of casinos. The big concert tonight, September 25, 2009 was from Reamonn. It was set near Markt Square with the old Rathouse (City Hall).

The name of the band, REAMONN, actually sounds a bit like the word: ROMAN: DON´T YOU THINK?

What I mean is that in a way, just as the Roman Empire had circuses in their larger towns and capital cities over 2000 years ago to keep its many underemployed elites and poorer citizens happy with a lot of show and glitter, Wiesbaden (the former Roman town of Aquae Mattiacorum) continues this tradition (and not only at election time), like this September 27 night—but all year ´round of keeping the masses happy with the largess offered by status quo powers-that-be.

Whatever, eh?

What you readers want to really know is:

(1) How was the Reamonn concert? and

(2) How is the visa thing for Victoria —my wife—coming along?

In answer to your first question: “Well, naturally, Reamonn is loved here in Hessen. His band comes from Limburg —just north of here. The tiny Market Square was packed and everyone was enjoying the local boys play wit their lead Irish singer, Rea Garvey, who speaks German really well.”--kas

Speaking in a fairly understandable German, Reamonn lead singer, Rea Garvey explained how he had lost an earring that his wife had given just before he left on a two day trip with the band. Along that two day road trip, it became clear to him that he was separated from his wife and he felt disconnected from her.

Garvey noted, “On that journey, I realized just how madly in love I am with my wife.”

Then the band, Reamonn, immediately kicked into playing the song that almost broke my heart for the moment: “(I’m a) Million Miles (from You)”.

Million Miles´ lyrics, goes like this:

To walk this streets without you
I hate being on my own
So many souls around you
But it never feels like home
Home is where my heart is aching

Home is where there's no mistaking
All this space between us
Isn't going anywhere
But it's ok to be us
Cause your far from being here
Here is where the sky gets lonely
Here I disappear

I'm a million miles from you
But if we hold on
Gotta hold on
I'm a million miles from you
But if we stay strong
I know we'll make it through

All this time is passing
But every day's the same
So much shadow casting
I don't wanna place the blame
Cause the blame is just a mixed emotion
Blame it on the fear

Most of my readers know that due to German bureaucrats in Hessen (and in various German ministries), Maria Victoria and I have had a forced separation here in Europe for most of 2009.

I have written, for example, in the past how in June 2009, I had expected and had so desired to go to the Elton John concert here in Wiesbaden with my wife….but less than a week before that concert, the local Wiesbaden Integration Office turned my wife’s request down, i.e. not allowing her to join me in Germany.

Within two weeks, Maria Victoria M. Baradero (my wife), had also missed the Rod Stewart Concert.

By the way, both the Elton John and Rod Stewart concerts took place in front of the Friedrich´s Bath house (Wiesbaden Kurhaus) and casino. Aquae Mattiacorum ( Wiesbaden ’s name under the Roman’s) was a bath town 2 Millennia ago. In Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s days, i.e. in the 1860s, Wiesbaden was also famous for baths—and casinos, too.

Later in mid-July 2009, over in Mainz City just across the Rhine River , I would hear Carlos Santana sing “Maria, Maria” & trying to break my heart over our separation on two different continents.

However, the refrain from Reamonn in his “Million Miles” was almost just as haunting—but I clapped along with hands overhead any way. (Reamonn´s text always have a hopefulness even when part of the text is a downer.)

Dear Maria Victoria, my love—friend—and wife,

“I'm a million miles from you
But if we hold on
Gotta hold on
I'm a million miles from you
But if we stay strong
I know we'll make it through

Now the distance alone can change us
I've been lying to myself
It's the moments apart that make us
See who we both really are

When I'm a million miles from you
But if we hold on
Gotta hold on
I'm a million miles from you
But if we stay strong
I know we'll make it through

I know we'll see it through
I'm a million miles from you
But if we stay strong
I know we'll make it through
I'm a million miles from you
I know we'll make it through
Gotta stay strong
Gotta be strong
You're a million miles away”

By the way, the texts from Reamonn are good—even when translated into German. Here is the great song called STRONG translated into German:

“Ich sehe die Angst in den Dingen, die wir nicht verstehen
Ich sehe die Angst in einem anderen blinden Mann
ich kann ihn nicht zurückhalten diesen Kampf, der das Innere beruhigt
ich kann ihn nicht zurück halten
Wer bin ich?

Ich weiß, du bist stark
Ich weiß, du bist bodenständig
ich weiß, du bist stark
Meine Schöne

Ich weiß, du bist stark
Ich weiß, du bist bodenständig
ich weiß, du bist stark
Meine Schöne

Ich kann mich nicht wegdrehen von dem, an das ich glaube
ich kann nicht zerstören oder betrügen Oh nein, Oh nein
Ich erkenne eine Schönheit in allem das ich sehen kann
ich kann es nicht aufhalten aber du kannst nicht loslassen

Ich weiß du bist stark
Ich weiß du bist bodenständig
ich weiß du bist stark
Meine Schöne

Ich weiß du bist stark
Ich weiß du bist bodenständig
ich weiß du bist stark
Meine Schöne

Denn sie können dich nicht halten und sie können mich nicht halten
und sie können nichts anhalten an das sie nicht glauben
sie können dich nicht halten und sie können mich nicht halten
und sie wollen nicht verstehen bis wohin der blinde Mann sieht

Ich weiß, du bist stark
Meine Schöne
Ich weiß, du bist stark
Ich weiß, du bist bodenständig
ich weiß, du bist stark
Meine Schöne
Ich weiß, du bist stark
Ich weiß, du bist bodenständig
ich weiß, du bist stark
Meine Schöne“

If you want to know what that all means in English, click here and listen

After singing MILLION MILES, Reamonn in Wiesbaden tonight then played a follow up for the crowd and for Victoria and I. (That follow up song for The Limburger Band was their “MOMENTS LIKE THIS”.) This song ends this way.

“No need to talk about it.
Like it won't happen,
'cause the chances are that it will.

Try not to talk about it,
just get it started.
Don't waste your time standing still.

And moments like this will bring you down.
Moments like this will bring you round.
Moments like this will make you strong.
Now that they're gone.
Now they're gone.
Now that they're gone.
Now they're gone.

And moments like this will bring you down.
Moments like this will bring you round.
Moments like this will make you strong.
Now that they're gone.
Now they're gone.
Now that they're gone.
Now they're gone.
Now that they're gone.
Now they're gone.

If it don't kill you, it makes you strong.
If it don't kill you, it makes you strong.
If it don't kill you, it makes you strong.
If it don't kill you, it makes you strong.”

I’m sure Victoria and I will have a lot to say about whether this all (i.e. our separation) makes us stronger or not.

I also par and I hope that that day is very—very—very—soon.







By Kevin Stoda
, Germany

DEMOCRACY NOW news shared on Friday that: “As the G-20 meets in Pittsburgh, a new report from Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch warns that the World Trade Organization has long advanced extreme financial deregulation under the guise of trade agreements and could undermine the current push for increasing regulation.”

Lori Wallach, the director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch division, stated in an interview that, in contrast to their own rhetoric, many of the EU states (and the EU itself) continue to promote the most extreme and de-regulating initiatives for financial services in the DOHA ROUND, even as they publically push for finance rules to primarily protect themselves at the G-20 Conference yesterday.

Ms. Wallach noted at a DN interview Friday, “There’s an incredible contradiction, where the summit communiqué is going to, on one hand, talk about regulating finance, and at the same time, they’re going to talk about adopting the Doha WTO expansion, and a huge part of that agreement is deregulating finance.”

I would say that after having listened to several days of various publically-owned German radio stations that the EU participants, especially the German Minister Steinbrueck, have been successfully spinning the G-20 conference as a big success—in a fairly cynical manner.

Wallach indicated in her interview that the EU participants are particularly promoting the current DOHA ROUND of the WTO while now trying to make a show of apparently new regulations, which only support the individual countries at the conference—made up of OECD countries.

Wallach said specifically, “And the problem is that the G-20 commitments aren’t binding. It’s a commitment of faith on the countries about what they’re going to do domestically. But the WTO rules are very binding and enforceable by sanctions. And so, it’s hard to know if it’s ignorance or it’s cynicism, but if the Doha round goes into place, all of the world’s countries will have a commitment not only to keep in place the existing WTO deregulation dictates on finance, but to deregulate further, right in the midst of what seems to be a global commitment to re-regulate.”


Wallach charges, “Well, see, this is the most peculiar aspect of it. The European Union, as you just mentioned, Angela Merkel, among others, have been pushing for more regulation, and in fact they want the G-20 to have a—to establish a global floor of regulation. The US hasn’t been for that. It’s not going to be in this communiqué, but they’ve really been pushing. But simultaneously, it’s the European Union that is the major instigator of deregulation.”

The director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch (PCGTW) division emphasized, moreover, “the big development is we at the [PCGTW] finally were able to get documents that actually explain what the plan is for the WTO Doha round, and it’s the European Union that’s been pushing the worst of it. I mean, they literally want a provision that is a standstill, a freeze in place, on regulation, while simultaneously they’re calling for re-regulation. You can’t have it both ways.”
Since all the German parties are holding a national election on Sunday September 27 there is little wonder that Merkel and other political folks are trying to have things both ways. However, the system is unfair to non-EU and other more advanced countries.

The EU and USA negotiators at Pittsburgh seem to be quite oblivious to this clear fact that existing WTO backdoor rules to financial agreements globally currently override what nation states can do to re-regulate.

Wallach explains, “Now, obviously, Congress is talking about re-regulating, but in our WTO commitments, we’ve basically agreed, in the areas we’ve bound—and we’ve bound everything. We did take one very important exception in the area of derivatives. That would be for onion futures. We bound every other kind of security, stock, derivatives, but we took a reservation for onion futures. It’s a really scary set of limitations. Now, it’s obvious that there’s an imperative politically to re-regulate. The question is, if sincerely there’s going to be re-regulation, this backdoor deregulation has got to be closed. So the existing WTO rules have to be changed, and obviously the Doha round’s further deregulation has to be stopped.”


As she stated on DN Friday, Wallach makes a call for civil society and organized civil action, she called: “[W]e need to make such a ruckus about it that basically a huge spotlight is shined on the issue, because there are a lot of very powerful financial service interests. By the way, they are the ones who wrote, largely, the Financial Services Agreement, in cahoots with the government. There’s a book from an American Express guy talking about how he and AIG and the others wrote these rules. Those guys want more of the same. I mean, one of the agreements that we found would be put into place automatically if the Doha round were adopted, as the G-20 communiqué calls for, is a limit on accounting regulation, regulation of the accounting sector, that was co-written by Arthur Andersen. I could not make this up. This is actually the document. It’s done. And so, the last thing we need are these limits.”

See the whole interview here:


Wednesday, September 23, 2009



by Kevin Stoda

DEMOCRACY NOW and many concerned peoples from around the world are noting the lack of US commitment to lead the global fight against the Earth warning too fast in this 21st century. See the discussion here:


The Union of Concerned Scientists is very very very concerned about the problems most of the world I is being most affected by. No, I am not referring to the global financial crisis. I am talking about GLOBAL WARMING, America!!

If I am elected Senator of Kansas in 2010, I will see that Kansas and America become the new leader working in coordination to fight global warming. America has worked on good treaties and agreement banning lead in the atmosphere and O-zone killing particles in the earths atmosphere, too.

THERE is no way America cannot take a strong stand for the earth's atmosphere. Besides the USA is one of the nations with the most coast on the planet--even more than China's coastline. There is every need for ALL AMERICANS TO DEMAND TO DO MORE.

NOW, fill out the linked website to the The Union of Concerned Scientists.

Here is what the Scientists wrote me in a recent email.

I am writing to strongly urge you to oppose any amendments to the Interior Appropriations bill that would block the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) ability to fight global warming.

Blocking the EPA from taking action on global warming flies in the face of the overwhelming scientific consensus that global warming is a real and present danger that we must address immediately.

Both congressional and EPA action are essential to cutting global warming pollution and moving to a clean energy economy. The EPA's mission is to protect the environment. Prohibiting this agency from addressing the biggest environmental problem we face will halt any serious effort by our country to effectively fight global warming. We have a responsibility to protect and preserve our planet for future generations.


LISTEN TO THE SOA WATCH FOLKS NOW. President Zelaya is Back in Honduras! SOA Graduates Fire Rubber Bullets and Tear Gas at Zelaya Supporters

The source of this article is the website against the infamous former School of Americas in Fort Benning, GA paid at a high level for decades. See my own article from last spring on the offer I make to close the school of America. KEVIN STODA, Candidate for U.S. Senate, (KS)

President Zelaya is Back in Honduras!
SOA Graduates Fire Rubber Bullets and Tear Gas at Zelaya Supporters

Call the State Department (202-647-4000) and the White House (202-456-1111)

Honduran President Manuel Zelaya addresses thousands of supporters who have gathered in front of the Brazilian embassy on Monday, September 21, 2009 in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

President Manuel Zelaya, after over eighty days in exile, has returned to Honduras. In a BBC interview, Zelaya said "[We travelled] for more than 15 hours... through rivers and mountains until we reached the capital of Honduras, which we reached in the early hours of the morning. We overtook military and police obstacles, all those on the highways here, because this country has been kidnapped by the military forces."

The coup regime has imposed a curfew for the entire country from 4pm yesterday afternoon until 6pm this afternoon. Media outlets are being silenced and cell phone and email correspondence is being limited, in a repeat of the tactics immediately following the June 28 military coup by SOA graduates. Thousands defied the orders and gathered in front of the Brazilian embassy, where Zelaya is currently staying. Radio Globo reported from the convergence in front of the Brazilian embassy: "We are here peacefully, unarmed because we are the people and don't fear the military. The military must serve the people and their democratically elected president, Mel Zelaya."

However, the SOA graduate-led Honduran military and the police moved this morning against the peacefully assembled crowd in front of the Brazilian Embassy and disbursed them with bullets and water tanks. Supporters of the constitutional president of Honduras are being attacked and beaten. The embassy is now surrounded by the military. The coup regime leader, Roberto Micheletti, threatened to cancel the embassy's immunity if Zelaya were not handed over to the de facto regime. An overall atmosphere of insecurity is now being imposed. President Zelaya called on the armed forces not to attack their own people and encouraged the Honduran people to continue mobilizing for peace and the restoration of constitutional order. The National Resistance Front Against the Coup has sent out a call for a national strike today, and for people to come from all parts of the country to the capital to continue the show of popular support for the return of the democratically elected president.

Our fear that the coup authorities would crack down even harder, now that their end is near, is materializing.

Click here to contact your Member of Congress to demand that they take a stand for democracy and against the SOA-graduate-led military coup.

Please take a couple minutes and call the State Department at 202-647-4000 to deliver the following message: "Work for the unconditional immediate reinstatement of President Zelaya and pressure the SOA graduate-led Honduran military to stop the violence against the people and their democratically elected president, Mel Zelaya. Ensure that the coup plotters will be held responsible for their actions. Any bloodshed will be on the hands of the coup government and security forces."

Call the White House comment line at 202-456-1111 with the same message.

Visit NarcoNews for a detailed report back of yesterdays events.

Visit for updates throughout the day.


Monday, September 21, 2009

Dear Daniel and Patricia Ellsburg, OPED News (OEN) got attacked within a day of the review of your talk on Democracy Now

Dear Daniel and Patricia Ellsburg, OPED News (OEN) got attacked within a day of the review of your talk on Democracy Now,

By Kevin Stoda, Wiesbaden , Germany IN EXILE

Mr. and Mrs. Ellsburg, just a day after I reviewed your call on radio to encourage more whistle blowing in Washington, D.C. and USA federal government, OPED News was hacked and this article taken down. I hope that hackers cannot stop whistle blowers. (See the letter from OEN Writers below from the weekend.)

So, I am responding to hackers by putting up the article again and again. See the article “The Return of the Most Dangerous Man in America”. In Short YOU RETURN STILL again.



Well, I’m sitting at my computer in Germany with my wife about 15,000 kilometers away in the Philippines .

On Democracy Now, I’m listening to the wife of Daniel Ellsburg, Patricia Ellsburg, speak of how U.S. government officials had spoke in terms of torture in terms of bombing whole populations in Laos and South East Asia in the late 1960s. She learned this all just a few days before her husband, Daniel Ellsburg sent the Pentagon Papers to many American newspapers.

Today, Amy Goodman was interviewing Patricia Ellsburg on her memories. Mrs. Ellsburg responded“it really struck—the pivotal moment, perhaps, in my adult life was the time when Daniel said, ´I think that I want you to read the papers.` He had protected me, because it was top secret. He didn’t want my fingerprints on the copies. ´And I’m considering putting out the papers,´because he knew that Nixon was going to expand the war and that the peace—the peace plan was not going to work. So this is our first year of marriage, first few months of marriage. And I was thirty-two, and I had spent a lot of years looking for Mr. Right. I had not been married before. And I’m reading documents that are horrifying to me.


Mrs. Ellsburg stated, as she read through these documents, “Amy, I saw something that Dan hadn’t seen, that in the language that was being used by the leaders of our country, they were using words like ´one more turn of the screw,´ ´ratchet up the water-drip technique,´ and much phrasing, much, much language of torturers. And I was horrified at the indifference to human suffering of both Americans and Vietnamese, their indifference to Congress, to the American public, the manipulations. And so, Dan said, ´Should I put these out?´ And I said, with tears in my eyes, ´These have to get out to the American public,´ knowing that my beloved husband, who I still love after forty years—he’s still my hero—might go to prison for the rest of his life. And I look back at that, and I am really proud. I’m really proud of—I was not groomed to be chopping top secrets off documents as we were about to publish—to copy them so that they could be given out to more newspapers.”

Daniel and Patricia Ellsburg are out doing interviews at this time, 40 years after the release of the famous Pentagon Papers, because they see a big ferocious repeat of what they witnessed in misguided war-making in Afghanistan today. Moreover, a new film about their lives in the times of the Nixon-Johnson-Kennedy-Eisenhower cover-ups is coming out soon. The film is called, “THE MOST DANGEROUS MAN IN AMERICA”.

On Democracy Now, Daniel Ellsburg said, “I look at this film, and I watch the bombs falling, and all I can see in my mind are the bombs, the same bombs, falling over Afghanistan , or Vietnamistan, and Iraq right now. And we’re really facing, at this moment, a crisis of decision that’s just like the one that’s in the film, which I failed at the time, where the President is doing something that I feel will be a disaster, and I kept my mouth shut about it, the change from 70,000 men in the spring of ’65 to an open-ended commitment, starting with another 50,000, which I knew was on the way to hundreds of thousands. I didn’t tell about that, and nor did anyone else. There was a lot of dissent in the administration about that, but we were overruled. We saluted Clark Clifford, Vice President Humphrey. Again, we have a vice president who apparently is against the application, another parallel. James Jones, the military man, can see what I can see and anybody can see, who has memories of Vietnam : there is no success at the end of this tunnel. There is only a stalemate, which could persist indefinitely.”

In short, after 40 years of mediocrity, the city of Washington DC needs to see that whistleblowers are needed more than ever, right now, Americans!

Daniel Ellsburg said he wished the film was out in the theaters of Washington , D.C. already. “We need people to put out, to tell the truth, and to do it, not the way I did, not after the escalation, not after the bombs have fallen, but right now. Right now. And for the Congress to hold the hearings that will entertain those people.”

Good luck America , you need more and better whistle blowers who can turn the country around.


Sept 2009 letter to OEN writers

It's been months since I've written to you as an writer, so this email will cover a number of topics.

First, we were hacked, probably twice, in the past few days. The first episode caused the loss of all articles posted on Thursday and Friday. It happened around 5:00 PM EST on Friday. We're working on getting the back up, but meanwhile, if you posted then, please re-submit your article or quicklink. Diaries were not affected.

Then, yesterday, a hacker sent a forged newsletter to our 23,000+ subscribers. We took some steps to block that from happening again, but there were still some holes that will take a bit more programming to do.

We have already taken several steps to increase security and will be making software enhancements to further defend the site. These will require more work from us, in terms of registering and enabling editor access. We will be white-listing editor and author IP addresses, and this may cause access issues for some users.

Many people have written in with messages like this one, from Project-Censored award winning writer Stephen Lendman:
Not surprising Rob. When you spread truth on vital topics, you're vulnerable and when this happens it shows you're doing the right thing. Not pleasant but wear it as a badge of honor. Steve


Saturday, September 19, 2009

There Ain’t NO Sunshine When She’s Gone—Well there may be Sunshine

There Ain’t NO Sunshine When She’s Gone—Well there may be Sunshine

By Kevin Stoda, Germany

Some of you reader’s know that one of the more meaningful (a al déjàvu-like) songs for me is Bill Wither’s classic, THERE AIN’T NO SUNSHINE WHEN SHE’S GONE.

A simple websearch of the song will show that many stars have tried to create either their own version or their own tribute version of the Wither’s ditty. For example, here are a few:

Sting and David Sandborn

The Lighthouse Family,

Otis Redding,

Bob Marley, Michael Jackson, and nearly 350 others have covered the Wither’s song in the past 35 years. The lyrics from Withers are short and bitter sweet—as well as certainly providing one of the more memorable cries of loss by a male in recorded music. (Withers received a Grammy for THERE AIN’T NO SUNSHINE WHEN SHE’S GONE.)

I personally will never forget walking down a very cold snowy sidewalk in January 1983 with this very song from Withers playing in the streets of Chicago, i.e. just outside the unemployment office. Chicago that winter seemed to be a world of unemployed men who stumbled through the cold up and down the street with these words echoing off the concrete.

Ain't no sunshine when she's gone
It's not warm when she's away
Ain't no sunshine when she's gone
She's gone much too long
Any time she goes away
Ain't no sunshine when she's gone
Wonder if she's gone to stay
Ain't no sunshine when she's gone
And this house just ain't no home
Anytime she goes away
I know
She's gone to stay
It's breakin' me up
Anytime she goes away
Gotta leave the young thing alone
There ain't no sunshine when she's gone
Despite the melancholy and unemployment in Chicago that freezing cold winter of 1983, the atmosphere in the City of the Big Shoulders soon turned into sea of change during the age of Ronald Reagan and high unemployment. You see a third party candidate, Harold Washington, was running for mayor of the city and would be elected within a fortnight—after hundreds of thousands got out the word and vote, i.e. for an alternative who could work across cultural and party lines.

I had been handing out “register to vote” information myself that cold January Day 1983 when those words came bouncing across the cold sidewalks from small street side amplifiers. So, I know that melancholy can turn to joy—something, which the Wither’s tune inspires.


The German officials at the Integration Office in Wiesbaden in Hessen have now kept my wife out of Germany for nearly ¾ of a years by now--and as I plopped down on my bed for a nap to get over the tiredness and depression on a gloomy rainy Tuesday this past week, the German radio station played:

Ain't no sunshine when she's gone
It's not warm when she's away
Ain't no sunshine when she's gone
And she's gone much too long
Any time she goes away
Ain't no sunshine when she's gone
I wonder if she's gone to stay
There ain't no sunshine when she's gone
And this house just ain't a home
Any time she goes away
I know
She's gone to stay
It's breaking me up
Any time she goes away
Gotta leave the young thing alone
There ain't no sunshine when she's gone

I naturally thought the voice was communicating to meet about being separated unfairly from my wife for months…..Well, at least, Bill Wither’s recorded voice & music certainly seemed to be playing an ode to Victoria and I – as we have been separated by 12,000 kilometers for far too long now. .(She lives in a very isolated part of the Philippines with her family—awaiting the change in visa status for her.)

The next day, however, I went over to the Wiesbaden Integration Officer, Frau Q met me with a smile. Ms. Q is the person on site in charge (most of the time) for my wife’s visa.

She assured me with a friendly tone of voice that the very next day, Thursday afternoon, that she would meet with several others on a committee and discuss my wife’s visa application for Germany. I had rarely seen her in such a good mood.

So, I left the office that Wednesday with a sense of euphoria and immediately emailed (and told) loved ones and friends that the 17th of September would be a day of big decision.

Today is now Saturday the 19th of September and there has been no news at all from the Wiesbaden Integration Office.

Despite this sense of missing something and being a bit depressed again, here in Bavaria, where I am visiting my sister and family this weekend, the sun is shining.

On the way here by train via Nuremberg, I came across a huge building. It was named the Victoria Insurance company. In Nuremburg, I stopped and drank a beer at the Hotel Victoria by the walls of the ancient city,.

Moreover, I recalled that the lucky numbers on the national lottery this week had included 5 and 31—which is my wife, Victoria’s, birthday, i.e. May 31.

So, despite the phrases from Wither’s song, THERE AIN’T NO SUNSHINE WHEN SHE’S GONE, echoing in my memory, perhaps sunshine is coming into Victoria and my life in the coming days and weeks.


Psalm 37:6 (New International Version)

“He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn,
the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.”

Isaiah 60:19 (New International Version)

19 “The sun will no more be your light by day,
nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you,
for the LORD will be your everlasting light,
and your God will be your glory.”

Matthew 13:43 (New International Version)

43″Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear.”


Thursday, September 17, 2009



By Kevin Stoda, Germany

The German newspapers were impressed by the stillness and quiet that took place in the busy metros and regional train lines of the city of Munich around noon on Wednesday. The moments of stillness was part of a memorial for Dominik Brunner, a 50-year old, who was violently killed on the weekend when he tried to stop 4 children from being abused by dangerous ruffians in one of the subways of the Bavarian capital.

As a symbol of against the spiraling violence in cities and small towns in Germany , the crowds around Munich on September 16 took a moment of silence as the body of Dominik Brunner was laid to rest at that same moment in a graveside of that same south German City . The evangelical minister Christian Wendebourg emphasized at the funeral that Brunner will long be forgotten but his action in the face of violence to save others will live long as an example to very many others.

The two youth who beat Brunner to death on Saturday in front of nearly 20 passersby—i.e. who did not intervene to save him—have been a great source of debate and discussion in the news, politics, on talk shows, and in police stations around Germany . Some are calling for tougher sentences as justice. Others are simply calling for more presences of police—as opposed to TV cameras in the streets and subways of cities. Others blame parents for raising “monsters”. Others are calling for more civil courage nationally.


Since I moved to Germany in January of this year (after a 20 year hiatus), I have noticed a reluctance for police to intervene in a timely manner. For example, in August the local newspaper, the Wiesbaden Kurrier, here on the Rhine River where I live, had a lengthy article on the apparent development of a large fishing mafia made up of Germans of Russian and East European decent. These so-called “Russians” or bullies have fairly well taken over the river from the many local sport fisherman and fishing clubs over the past two years.

These days, according to writer Jorg Hamm, this “river fish mafia” breaks every fishing code in the region and keep guards posted on both sides of the Rhine with cell phones in hand every single weekend—just in case the local law enforcers show up.

The Kurrier newspaper writer, Hamm , quoted several hobby fishermen who had given up on calling local police or river police altogether. One local law enforcement official had noted that if he’d intervene with these fishing bullies, he would just get hit in the head. Moreover, with this world of Rhine River lawless, many longtime river fishermen do not bother to fish on Germany ’s largest river any more.

In short, police tendencies in Germany are to not intervene in any fight where one is outnumbered or will certainly be overpowered, as was the case with the 50-year Dominik Brunner in Muenchen last weekend. Police often see what Dominik Brunner did in intervening in a fight that wasn’t his as an illogical act, especially in that the violent youths were stronger than he was.


However, Pastor Wendebourg calls Germans to greater “civil courage”. Most Germans seem to agree, but there is no major trend in Germany towards greater vigilantism or longer prison sentences (or a system of 3-strikes-and -you-are-out, like in the USA ).

There are already two extremist groups who do seem to take the law and violence in their own hands in Germany . There are the large numbers of Autonomen (Anarchists and leftist radicals, situated primarily in Berlin and Hamburg ) and right wing neo-fascist groups (scattered throughout the country but most prevalent and successful in the East German states of Saxony and Thueringen.)

Like the fascists and neo-Nazis, the Autonomen (the autonomous ones) see themselves as a subculture in Germany and offer an alternative to youth who feel threatened by others in society. They have built up affiliations or a network across Europe . In Berlin , they are most famous for two things: (1) They often set fire to very expensive German cars as a sign of protest. (2) Every May 1 or May Day some of them get involved in violent attacks and destruction.

Abroad, the fascists and neo-Nazis are more well-known than the anarchists or the autonomen in Germany . However, the government and its courts of Germany today, (because of the national desire to improve Germany ’s image abroad) is more willing to hand down tough sentences and to enforce laws related to fascism and calls to violence from fascists. As a matter of fact, some Neo-nazis work full-time outside of Germany rather than in-land because the pressure from investigators is so hot at times.

This current societal context or situation of already having too many vigilante-like citizens groups, like fascists and autonomen, combined with the horrid memories of the civil in-fighting of the reds and brown shirts of the 1920s and the subsequent fascism in the 1930s and 1940s, leads most Germans today to prefer or choose more peaceful routes in this millennium.

However, I also know that at times talk is sometimes cheap and action speaks much more.

I wish the country of Germany the best in terms of trying to be able to balance individual freedom and the need for law enforcement. An active citizenry is needed to improve conditions in the country. The trend for decades has been to place too much dependence on training in peace-making and in global education in the public and private schools.

However, I would say that parents and adults need to set better examples at home.

In the long run, if a living parent shows civil courage and is willing to be a peace maker (no matter how difficult), that will influence children more than a dead hero of civil courage, like the poor Dominik Brunner.

P.S. As I write this article, there has been another act of violence in schools in Germany . In Ansbach , Bavaria several students and their attacker are now in the hospital. The attacker brought an ax to the Carolinen School . The violent 19-year old then set off several Molotov cocktails in the gym.

Today is 6 months since the last major attack in German Schools, i.e. in Winnenden by Stuttgart . There 17-year old murder killed at least 11 people after taking 18 guns from his father. In short, schools aren’t enough to stop the violence. It takes a wall of civil courage that is not simply ready to fight violence only with violence.

Parents and others, please, stand up and get some control of the status quo. Stop letting violence happen to you and others.


„Gottesdienst trauert um den tapferen S-Bahn Helden“,

Hamm, Jorg, “Angler fuehlen sich von Russen bedroht”,

Nieto, Sonia “ Solidarity, courage and heart: what teacher educators can learn from a new generation of teachers” Intercultural Education, 1469-8439, Volume 17, Issue 5, 2006, Pages 457 – 473


Monday, September 14, 2009


September 14, 2009

Vorsitzenderinnen des Petitions Ausschusses
Landestag Hessens
Auswärtige Amt
das Hessisches Ministerium des Innern und für Sport,
Postfach 31 76,
65021 Wiesbaden

Dear Hessen Landestag, Petitions Committee Chair, and Auswaertige Amt,

I apologize for writing in English this time, but my German writing is not up to par with my nativel language, English.

I, Kevin Anthony Stoda, am enquiring about the status of the investigation that you have been undertaking since July 2009 at my petition. In this letter, I am asking for a decision in favor of my wife, Maria Victoria M. Baradero of the Philippines, in her request to receive a German spousal visa to come and live with me in Germany as I have had a working visa here since the end of March 2009.

Note: According to most common interpretation and judgements, I earn enough money to support my wife. However, my wife and I have been denied this right to union for many months now.


This letter is a follow-up (in English) to the German letter I sent on July 17, 2009 concerning my request to petition the Hessen Landestag to look into „the aribitrary and peculiarly incomplete system of analysis and calculation of income, etc.“ used by the Wiesbaden Integrationsamt (under the direction of the Innenministerium Deutschlands) to reject my wife’s, Maria Victoria M. Baradero of the Philippines, visa application on June 23, 2009.

As you know, I had basically been told in writing by the Wiesbaden Integrationsamt on June 23, 2009 that my wife’s application would be turned down because I earned approximately 147 Euros to little. The Wiesbaden Integrationsamt had made this calculation using Innenministerium calculations, which obviously ignore sums of money, which include annual income from my fathers estate which run between 5,000 and 15,000 dollars in this current 2009.

Note: I now expect the exact sum to be over 10,000 for the year. This sum will be passed no later than October 10, 2009. If the sale of a house goes through, I will receive more financial support or income. I had also indicated in my letter to you of July 17 that there were other sources (and likely sources) of income, which had been ignored by the Innenministerium calculation model, employed by the Wiesbaden Integrationsamt.

SINCE JUNE, 23rd 2009

In July two measures were taken which have led the Wiesbaden Integrationsamt to reconsider my case.

First, my wife, Maria Victoria M. Baradero of the Philippines, who was still living in Kuwait where we had met (in 2005) and married (2008), filed for the German Embassy of Kuwait to review her case. For me, this meant acquiring dozens of pieces of paperwork related to my father’s estate in the USA. I provided the German embassy investigators with an exhausting amount of material over the internet. In mid- to late- July, the embassy sent the results of its investigation back to the Wiesbaden Integrationsamt. However, to-date the Wiesbaden Integrationsamt has made no decision based on the German Embassy’s recommendations.

Second, in July I also filed a petition with numerous groups including the Hessen Landtag and with the Innenministeriam of Germany.

I noted that the denial of my right to bring my wife, Maria Victoria M. Baradero, was costing me much more than the supposed 147 Euros that the Wiesbaden Integrationsamt said „ I needed to cough up“ in order to be permitted to bring my wife here.

Let me explain. I currently give my wife, Maria Victoria M. Baradero, anywhere from two-hundred-fifty Euros to four-hundred-fifty Euros each month in the Philippines (and even more when she still lived in Kuwait through July 21, 2009)

August 2009

I enquired in writing several times in August whether the Wiesbaden Integrationsamt had reconsidered my wife’s visa application. I only recieved one reply from them. That e-mail stated simply, „Be patient, Mr. Stoda!“

In August I also received a letter from the „Petitions Ausschuss“ of the Hessen Landtag, stating that an investigation was on the way.

September 2009

In contrast, to the fairly frustrating preceding 6-months concerning my wife’s being prohibited from joining me in Germany, the last two weeks in Wiesbaden have brought me some hope—but still no answers or decision from the Wiesbaden Integrationsamt came to me concering the reconsideration of my wife’s visa request from April 2009.

The first good news in early September 2009 was that the Finanzamt in Wiesbaden approved my request to add my wife’s, Maria Victoria M. Baradero, name to my paperwork with their office.

Moreover, in the first week of September, I was also able to change my own visa at the Wiesbaden Integrationsamt, so I can now potentially undertake additional freelance work for the rest of the year and potentially earn 147 extra Euros in a month, i.e. as soon as I can find some part-time teaching or training work.

The next week, an even better event occurred in support of my wife’s cause when I took my story of Maria Victoria M. Baradero’s having been denied entry to Germany for 147 Euros by the Integrationsamt to Wiesbaden Einwohnermeldeamt (Residency office for Wiesbaden).

The officials at the Wiesbaden’s Einwohnermeldeamt suggested I return to the Finanzamt Wiesbaden and request a change in my Lohnsteuerklasse (Tax Classification). This is because those taxpayers in Germany who live intentionally alone (through seperation or divorce) pay more taxes generally than those living with their legally married partners.

The next day, after my visit to the Wiesbaden’s Einwohnermeldeamt, I went to the Finanzamt Wiesbaden for the second time this month. To my pleasant surprise, the Finanzamt Wiesbaden was ameable and agreed to change my tax classification as of September 2009 through the end of 2009. (The caveate here is that my wife should show up in Germany by no later than December 31, 2009.)

In short, both the Wiesbaden’s Einwohnermeldeamt and the Finanzamt Wiesbaden have in September looked into the matter, and they both agreed that it is not my fault that the Wiesbaden Integrationsamt, using a questionable salary and income calculations’ methodology, has kept my wife from living with me.


Well, as is well-known, Maria Victoria and my change in tax classification in Germany as of this month means that I now will receive nearly 240 Euros more a month home as of September 2009. Most importantly, this sum of 240 Euros exceeds the litmus test set by the the Integrationsamt in Wiesbaden, set on June 23, 2009 of 147 Euros monthly.

This is why I now turn to the Petition investigation, which I had personally requested in July from the Landestag Hessen.

Would you please write or direct the Integrationsamt in Wiesbaden to assist my wife and me at this time? In this directive or recommendation, please ask the Integrationsamt in Wiesbaden to immediately agree to allow my wife fly to Germany and enter Germany on a spousal visa as soon as possible?

I thank you sincerely for all your help in this matter. It would be especially wonderful if she could arrive before the National Unification Holiday of Germany on October 3, 2009.


Kevin Anthony Stoda
Oranienstr. 62


Sunday, September 13, 2009

SINTI & ROMA and millions of Immigrants suffering in and out of Greek Camps 2009

Devious Diva in Greece published this article on her blog feed. The article "Shocking Conditions" is from Ioanna Kotsioni, who works as the Deputy Head of Mission for the Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF).

The article at the blog THIS IS NOT MY COUNTRY reminds us that gypsey children are still persecuted in Europe. Interestingly, the article came out about the same time that the German high courts banned emigration police to stop sending illegal aliens to Greece where the refugee camps and life conditions are substandard in Europe.

The conditions of Gypsy and Roma in camps reflect a greater problem in Greece which cannot integrate or is not willing to integrate so many foreign born peoples that have landed at its shores over the decades.

The German court stopped the expulsion of an African family to Greece. The family had already suffered in Greece for several years in camps etc. before arriving in Germany.

Ioanna Kotsioni writes, "Between August 20 and 28, I visited the detention center of Pagani to support the MSF team that since July has been providing psychosocial support to the undocumented migrants inside the center. The situation I faced when I first arrived was shocking."

Moreover, "In the center, there were more than 900 people detained in extremely overcrowded and unsanitary conditions. The facility is actually an old warehouse that is not suitable to accommodate people. According to local authorities, its capacity is for up to 300 people, but when I visited I saw three times that many people—men, women, adolescents, and children—living in overcrowded cells, most of them sleeping on mattresses on the floor with no bed sheets. In each of the seven cells, including the cell with women and children, there were only two toilets and showers to be used by the 100 to 250 people detained there. People eat their meals inside the cell and are not regularly allowed in the yard."

This has led to children-led hunger strikes in recent weeks at the camp.


Dear Kansans, The USA must cut its long distance military losses and expenditures. Bring troops home and cut costs in military waste

Dear Kansans,

The USA must cut its long distance military losses and expenditures. Bring troops home and cut costs in military waste before wasting more and more money and lives.

Find Hayden´s position at

Sign this position above (and read letter below).

Kevin Stoda, candidate for USA Senator(KS) 2010

Copeland , Kansas

p.s. This statement below comes from Historians against the War (HAW)

Afghanistan - A Petition to Take Action Against the War

We, the undersigned peace and justice leaders, believe that the American military interventions in Afghanistan , Pakistan and Iraq are deepening quagmires that threaten a Long War without end.

At the current rate of American deaths in Afghanistan , over 1,000 additional American soldiers will be killed in the next two years of "hard fighting" predicted by the Pentagon as the next phase of a ten year occupation. Another $130 billion for Afghanistan and Iraq now is being rushed through a sleeping Congress. An escalation of even more troops is pending.

Now is the time for an exit strategy to end these wars. The government of warlords, drug lords, and landlords we prop up in Kabul is losing more legitimacy by the day. A majority of Americans - including 70 percent from the majority party - now consider Afghanistan a mistake. Leading national security experts even deny that it's a necessary war.

If we do not decide to disengage at once, our dreams of domestic reform will be squandered by years of war budgets. Our dreams of clean energy will be buried in wars over oil and pipelines. The global good will extended to our new President will be jeopardized.

We understand how difficult it is to reverse a mistaken course. But that is the leadership we need, not one that continually escalates in order not to lose. We have been there.

- Our government should adopt an exit strategy from Afghanistan based on all-party talks, regional diplomacy, unconditional humanitarian aid, and timelines for the near-term withdrawal of American and NATO combat troops.

- The aerial bombardments of Afghan and Pakistan villages, like burning down haystacks to find terrorist needles, should end.

- Military spending should be reversed in Afghanistan to focus on food, medicine, shelter, the socio-economic needs of the poor, and the dignity of women and children.

- President Obama should keep his pledge to withdraw all troops from Iraq by 2011, and prevent American interference in the forthcoming Iraqi elections.

- The President should oppose any Israeli attack on Iran , which will only inflame the regional and global conflict.

Much as we were inspired by Barack Obama's election, we will not be taken for granted by the President and the Congressional majority. The historic victories in 2006 and 2008 were fueled by popular enthusiasm and unprecedented voter turnouts that cannot be reignited by e-mail solicitations. A growing disenchantment with a costly quagmire will threaten all the hopes of 2008. Everything is related now: we cannot afford national health care, housing, and clean energy while spending billions on quagmires across several continents.

We are prepared to create a storm of protest in Congressional districts and close Senate races. We will form alliances with all those whose hope for health, energy and economic reform are diminished by these wars. We will defend dissent in the armed forces and protect our children from the snares of military recruiters. We will reach out to strengthen a global peace movement, especially in NATO countries.

History shows that terrorist threats can come from German cities, African villages, and even homegrown American cells, not simply the caves of Pakistan .

Our security needs cannot be served by provoking the growing hatred of America caused by repeated invasions of foreign lands. We are human beings who refuse to be defined in the world as mindless military drones and Predators.


Take a one-question poll on peace taxes here--if you have time


Saturday, September 12, 2009



By Kevin Stoda, Germany

According to the Deutsche Welle on September 3, 2009 “After four years of sharing power with the Social Democrats, Chancellor Angela Merkel has made it clear she'd like to rule without them. But a new poll suggests she might not get the votes she needs.” Since 2005, Merkel’s party, known as the CDS-CDU (Christian Democratic- and Christian Socialist Union group), has had to serve in a grand coalition with their arch-political rivals, the Socialist Party (SPD) of Germany .

On August 30th, the SPD, Green and THE LINKE parties had forced German Chancellor Merkel’s own party out of power in elections in the German states of Thüringen and Saarland . Worse still, in both Thüringen and Saarland , the CDU’s vote total had fallen by over ten percent since the previous state elections 4 years ago.

Meanwhile, and somewhat hopefully for Chancellor Merkel, national polls in mid-September in Germany still indicate a likely election result of Merkel being reelected as Chancellor with the support of the FDP (Germany´s Free Democratic or liberal party). Most polls show the Chancellor’s party with 36.3% of the vote and the FDP with about 14.4% of the vote total nationally. That is a slim majority but certainly enough to build a coalition on.


This is trend in the expected-2009 National Election results is particularly frustrating for many would-be voters in Germany . Polls have shown consistently that as of 2009, German voters prefer left-of-center politics much more than either conservative, liberal or libertarian policies. Paradoxical, there is widespread expectations in Germany that CDU-CSU and FDP national governing coalition will be the result of the September 27, 2009 German elections.

A well-designed poll in summer by the DIE ZEIT newspaper demonstrated the following results and trends in political demographics in Germany : (1) Every third German considers him or herself LEFT. Even more surprisingly, (2) nearly 25% of the CDU-CSU party also see themselves as left of center. As well, (3) 23% of the FDP party members see themselves as left of center.

As a matter of fact, the majority of Germans also support these 3 key position—all fully supported by in the party platform of THE LINKS Party (“Links” is the German word for THE LEFT) of the Germany. These three positions are:

(1) Germany needs to rethink its policy and get out of Afghanistan .

(2) Germany needs to set a minimum wage.

(3) Government needs to maintain control of both the German Railway (DB) system and the major electrical or energy corporations.

Why will the SPD, DIE LINKE, and other progressive parties not likely build a winning coalition in 2009 in Germany ?


According to most every political wonk in Germany, the problem for the progressive parties is that until now the national SPD (Social Democratic Party’s) leadership and the SPD’s chancellor-candidate for 2009, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, have refused to work out its ongoing differences and concerns with the THE LEFT (in German language: DIE LINKS) Party.

DIE LINKS party is Germany ’s newest national political party—coming into parliament for the first time in 2007.,1518,539331,00.html

THE LEFT Party of Germany was created by a breakaway or splinter group of SPD party leaders, (including former SPD Chancellor Candidate, Oscar Lafontaine) who had felt in the early part of this decade that the SPD Chancellor Schroeder had given away the baby with the bathwater in passing conservative and anti-social legislation—similar to what Clinton did in the USA in the 1990s. This splinter group joined the second generation of leadership spun-off from the former SED Party of East Germany. This particular party was known as the PDS until joining Oscar Lafontaine and his SPD-colleagues in a “leftist renewal party” platform in 2007.

In Hessen, there was a disastrous attempt to marry the SPD and DIE LINKE in a coalition at the state level in 2008.,1518,539331,00.html

However, at the city level, such as in Cologne, Düsseldorf, and in Berlin, the new party, DIE LINKE and SPD parties have been able to work together (NOTE: often with the co-support of the German Green Party). More importantly, following the Thüringen and Saarland elections on August 30, 2009 it again appears that two more coalitions involving a combination of SPD, LINKE, and Greens may come into being by early October 2009.

Frustratingly for many voters, the bad feelings between some of the SPD leadership and its former colleagues in DIE LINKE PARTY have kept the two parties from working together at the national level. Furthermore, in the western regions of Germany , many SPD party members and independent voters refuse to support a coalition with DIE LINKE, which they see as finding its roots fully in the communist political tradition, which had dictatorially controlled East Germany from 1949 to 1989.


THE LOCAL, an English speaking daily in Germany , explains, “So-called ´red-red´ coalitions between the SPD and The Left, a collection of former communists and disgruntled trade unionists, are common in the east of the reunited country. But they have been taboo in the west, where many see The Left as too radical and tainted by its historical links with the party that built the Berlin Wall. Saarland would be the first western state to see such a governing alliance.”

Merkel´s party, the CDU-CSU paints any double-red coalition as a communist menace. So, naturally, in the wake of the August 30 election results, “Merkel, who grew up behind the Iron Curtain, warned in regional campaign appearances against the rise of The Left as Germany marks 20 years since the Wall's collapse.”

On the other hand, “Frank-Walter Steinmeier, the SPD's candidate struggling to oust Merkel from the Chancellery, immediate seized on the results as a chance to ignite his flagging campaign.” Steinmeier continues to emphasize that his party’s chances are not over. However, “. . . the state results, largely expected, are unlikely to knock Merkel off course in her bid to win a second term as the CDU still enjoys around a 15-point lead ahead of the Social Democrats in national surveys.” This is because (just as in Saarland is currently the case) without DIE LINKE, the SPD cannot put together a coalition, i.e. without rejoining an alliance with Chancellor Merkel’s CDU-CSU Party at the national level.

NOTE. Meanwhile, there is not much of a chance that Chancellor Merkel will invite Steinmeier’s SPD to a Grand Coalition (again) in 2009 if the FDP can poll 14 to 15% of the national vote. This is because over the 70 years of election history of the Federal Republic of Germany, the CDU-CSU has consistently chosen to rule with the FDP (Free Democrats) as its standard partner nearly well over 50% of the time

In other words, until the SPD’s national leadership and their supporters can work out their differences, the SPD is likely to be the odd-man-out when national election day arrives. Currently, the SPD is only expected to get about 23% of the national vote on September 27. Therefore, rumors are abound that following this anticipated-2009-catastrophe, the SPD will rethink its attitude towards working with THE LEFT party.


Here on this website is a history of German national election results since 1949,,1659820,00.html



By Kevin Stoda, Germany

As the German national elections draw near at the end of September 2009, the leftist and more progressive groups in the country are drawing votes away from the major center party, the SPD (Socialist Party of Germany). The issue of “Lohndumping” and cries for social justice art at heart of the advance of the far left party, DIE LINKE (The Left).

The Left Party is currently expected to get 12% of the national vote on the final Sunday of September when all Germans can go to the Polls and elect their national representation. (They had only received 5 % of the vote four years ago.)

This success of the rising LEFT may appear to be a surprising situation for most other parts of the world to imagine because the German economy has been seen as the best in Europe for decades.


“Lohndumping” is a German word that basically translates into English as “Dumping Salaries” or “Dumping Salary”. But, what does “Dumping Salary” mean in English?

“Dumping Salary” means that the worker who earns such salaries in Germany is earning an unlivable wage. That is he or she is being dumped on by system that fails to even set a national minimum wage. This coming week the Wiesbaden study group “Arbeitskreis gegen Lohndumping und Leiharbeit” (the Workgroup against Dumping-Salaries and Sub-Contracted Employment) is focusing on this massive problem in Germany.

“Leiharbeit” or subcontracting in Germany in its various forms is often to be seen as part-time or transitional work. So, the government does not require the firms or individuals doing it to put the full amount of their earnings into the national social security and insurance system. However, many businesses rely on these types of employment annually and to too great a degree.

Markus Pastorek of this Anti-Dumping Wage group in Wiesbaden, Germany writes, “More and more actively employed people are working under precarious wage conditions with hourly wages sometimes below 5 dollars an hour [3.50 Euro] and must depend on Harz IV funds [government assistance funds established only to be transitional but have not been] to get by. Many of those affected are members of our organization and support the Initiative for Social Justice.”

Here is the website for the Initiative for Social Justice in Wiesbaden

Millions of Germans are certainly affected but immigrants have been effected even more. For example, since the European market is so well integrated in Germany, many non-Germans have landed in Germany over the past decades. Some of these laborers, such as those from southern and eastern Europe have very poor social welfare support and retirement support in their birthplaces to fall back on.

Pastorek has noted, “We are working for the adoption of rules that are of sufficient strength to require supermarkets to pay living wage tariffs and dissolve the complete overdependence on subcontractors, so that the same pay and working conditions apply to all employees at the same firm.”


The local Wiesbaden working group is also active with the national trade unions, such as IG Metall and Deutsche Gewerkschaftsbund (DGB). Pastorek says, “The reality is such that in many of the ‘Dumping Wage’ jobs and subcontracting work, there has been little to no organization so far. That is because many laborers in these positions work only for a short time in one place before moving on to others. In this situation, getting to have good relations with the local labor unions has been minimal.”

Initiative for Social Justice in Wiesbaden is one of the regional groups working to get labor unions to become more involved in this facet of the economy. This next week, the DGB will meet with the Initiative for Social Justice in Wiesbaden.

The Initiative for Social Justice in Wiesbaden has been very active. Not a week goes by when new posters are not pasted around town by Initiative for Social Justice in Wiesbaden and a new workgroup meetings are held regularly.

I think not only do Germans and their labor unions need to organize with so much energy today in 2009, but Americas and other peoles need to get on the ball and organize subcontractors and underpaid citizens and immigrants more.

Living wages, legal protections, and good retirement or insurance funds are needed by all—regardless as to whether one is an immigrant or national of the land they are laboring in.


A copy of a recent letter from the Initiative for Social Justice in Wiesbaden follows in German.

Liebe Mitglieder und Freunde der Initiative,

wir möchten unseren Arbeitskreis gegen Lohndumping und Leiharbeit am 16.09.2009 ankündigen. Dieser findet um 19.°° Uhr in der Gaststätte Eintrachthaus, Hellmundstraße 25, in Wiesbaden-Westend statt.

Der Arbeitskreis hat sich am Dienstag, 08.09.2009 im Zusammenhang mit unserer Veranstaltung mit Axel Gerntke vom IG-Metall-Vorstand gegründet.

Immer mehr Berufstätige arbeiten in präkeren Arbeitsverhältnissen mit Stundenlöhnen, die bis auf € 3,50 herunter gehen und müssen deshalb ergänzende Leistungen nach Hartz IV beziehen. Viele dieser Betroffenen sind auch Mitglieder und Sympatisanten der Initiative für soziale Gerechtigkeit.

Wir wollen die Übernahme aller Regalauffüller in die Supermärkte bei einer tariflichen Bezahlung, die Abschaffung der Leiharbeit, damit die jetzt dort darüber Beschäftigten den gleichen Lohn und Arbeitsbedingungen erhalten wie die Stammbelegschaften.

Um dies zu erreichen arbeiten wir mit den betreffenden Gewerkschaften zusammen. Die Realität zeigt, daß gerade bei den diesbezüglich Beschäftigten kaum jemand gewerkschaftlich organisiert ist. Zudem arbeiten diese oft nur für eine kurze Zeit in einem Betrieb. Dadurch sind sie über die normale Gewerkschaftsarbeit schlecht erreichbar. Wir als Initiative arbeiten außerbetrieblich und können dadurch diese Arbeitnehmer losgelöst von der betrieblichen Beschäftigung erreichen und aktivieren. Deshalb sehen wir unsere Arbeit als Ergänzung zu den den diebezüglichen gewerkschaftlichen Aktivitäten an. Wir würden uns deshalb auch freuen, wenn seitens der Gewerkschaften Mitglieder in unserem Arbeitskreis mitarbeiten würden.

Zur Durchsetzung von konkreten Verbesserung für die Betroffenen werden wir auch unseren bisherigen erfolgreichen Druck, zum Beispiel durch unsere Plakate, anwenden. Wiesbadener Supermärkte und Zeitarbeitsfirmen müssen zukünftig damit rechnen, von unseren Plakaten umringt zu werden, die auf die dortigen Missstände hinweisen. Im Rahmen eine Kundenboykott hat zum Beispiel die Gewerkschaft ver.di Verbesserungen für die Beschäftigten herausholen können.

Mit freundlichen Grüßen
Markus Pastorek (Beisitzer)


Friday, September 11, 2009

POLL IN Op-ED News. Let Justice and Fairness Roll Down; Express yourself

Go to this link and participate.

Let your anger rivet those people who don't want Americans to have health care, etc.--just endless war.

The poll is about:

Should Americans be allowed to withold taxes for military spending?

Currently, in the checks and balances of American society, there is no way for tax payers and other related stakeholders--such as their children and other dependents--to withhold money from military spending (or even CIA spending) on moral or philosophic grounds. At the same time, the U.S. military and CIA cn spend millions if not billions of dollars influencing congress and millions of citizen stakeholders. They can also mine data from Homeland Security to target American youth. See Do you think this imbalance needs to be lessened by changing the tax system? i.e. allowing taxes to be redirected or withheld?