Showing posts from March, 2008

From Venezuela With Love

I know I'm supposed to be posting the 2007 testimonies to the United Nations on the question of Guam this week, but when I saw this on, I couldn't resist.

This letter, which is from a minister in the Venezuelan government to the Washington Post is rich in terms of teasing out the ways in which the media, while supposedly being an antagonistic institution in relation to the government, in reality regularly serves as its voice box. For instance, as this letter shows, even the so-called "liberal" media of the Washington Post is perfectly willing to accept the US government's talking points when it comes to Hugo Chavez, Venezeula and their neighbor Columbia. Venezuela is run by a thug and a dictator who is recklessly trying to cling to permanent power, while in Columbia the president is making similar moves yet somehow these actions don't merit the same attacks.

Furthermore, the idea that the media is supposed to be creative of critical about the s…

I Guinifen i Mañainå-ta

Guam is no different than most places in the United States empire, in that it doesn't think kind about, or simply doesn't think about the United Nations.

Although, people on Guam may think of themselves as the most American things in the world, and not see any real fundamental problems with how their island exists in relation to the United States, legally we are still a problem and we are still the United Nation's problem. People argue all the time about whether Guam's status as a colony is good or bad. And for those who find this unbelievable, I'm sad to say its not, I get emails or comments on my blog all the time, from people, Chamorro and non-Chamorro who argue that colonialism in the case of the Guam is actually a good thing! In everyday life, we hear this argument through "corruption talk." For my research on my dissertation I regularly search the internet for blogs that are from Guam or discuss or mention Guam. For non-local blogs from Guam, meaning…

Makpo' i Konfrensia

A few weeks ago, the conference "Postcolonial Futures in a Not Yet Postcolonial World: Locating the Intersections of Ethnic, Indigenous and Postcolonial Studies," which grad students in my department had been planning for months, took place, and it was a big success!
First, we were able to bring together scholars and students from the disciplines of ethnic, indigenous and postcolonial studies, and get them into conversation with each other, and also educate each other about what the traditions, histories and ideas of both their respective communities and academic disciplines could offer to the other. I can definitely say, that people who came to the conference with very narrow ideas about what an "indigenous" person is (for instance a Native American, or a Chamorro), left the panels and the discussions, with a much more nuanced and much broader understanding. Participants and presenters addressed these issues from Latin American, African, African American, Middle Ea…


I have to admit, so far in this Presidential campaign, there have been moments where I have really admired both John McCain and Barack Obama.

Most of my admiration for McCain has tapered off, although there were some moments early on in the campaign, where he did make me sit up and take notice. For instance during the Republican presidential debates, issues of national security and torture were very difficult to stomach. Ron Paul generally stood out amongst the others, as someone with a few principles, as opposed to tossing red meat on a crowd of voters who will yell and shriek mindlessly at any mention of killing terrorists or torturing the supposed enemies of the United States.

Mitt Romney, who had to be the least principled person running this year on both sides, really exemplified this angry partisan talking point style of campaigning. I'll never forget his remark that Guantanamo should be doubled. An almost meaningless statement, except in the universe where someone believes th…


In terms of finishing up graduate school, finishing my dissertation in a timely manner and moving on and out of this phase of my life, I have one mortal enemy.

Video games.

As an undergrad I lost many many days to playing games such as Super Smash Brothers Melee, Phantasy Star Online and Perfect Dark with my friends and family. As a grad student however, so much of my time has to be spent on writing, reading, and other academic and community projects that spending a day or a few days trying to beat the latest RPG is an unfortunate impossibility.

I remember when Final Fantasy X came out several years ago. At that time I was already cutting back on my video game time because of the master's program I was in at the University of Guam, and had basically given up RPGs all together. In this game, there was something called a "sphere grid" which you would use to develop your character. My friends the Labrador Brothers, Francis, Joe and Ron were determined to completely conquer the…

Smearing Obama

March 17, 2008
Smearing Obama
Every antiwar candidate has to endure the same hate campaign
By Justin Raimondo

The smear machine is taking out after Barack Obama, and with a vengeance. Not that this is surprising, or even anything new: they've been conducting a low-level hate campaign ever since he attained front-runner status, and now they're going into overdrive with a commentary by Ron Kessler in the Wall Street Journal that uses the same guilt-by-association technique that they used against Ron Paul.

With Paul, it was tarring him with the brush of "white nationalism," even though any sort of nationalism – white, black, pink, or purple – is anathema to libertarians of Paul's ilk. That didn't stop the character assassins, however – including those Beltway "libertarians" who have imbibed the political correctness that is de rigueur on the Washington cocktail-party circuit. Newsletters written during the 1980s, excoriating race rioters and…

Baby Driver's License

Sumahi is eleven months old now and recently got her baby driver's license! In honor of her eleventh month of life, her mother was kind enough to get her a baby used car! Here are some videos below of her taking it out for a test drive. Actually, its not much of a test drive, but more of a cruising session.

Warning: For those who are faint of heart, this videos are insanely cute, and may cause prolonged smiling, crying, giggling, or fainting.

Six Crashes

One of the first posts I ever wrote on this blog was in September of 2004 titled "Sometimes I Dream of Okinawa."

I wrote this post more than a year before the initial announcement that the Department of Defense was making plans to "transfer" 7,000 of its Marines based in Okinawa to Guam. This number of Marines was later increased to 8,000, and expanded to include approximately 9,000 dependents and an unknown number of troops from South Korea.

My post wasn't very long, but just touched lightly on the ways Okinawa and Guam are linked together through the sorts of catastrophic, invasive and everyday damages that a large military presence can bring. Mamahlao yu' didide' put este na klasin post pa'go, sa' kulang ti to'a an un kompara i tinige'-hu gi ayu na tiempo yan i tinige'-hu pa'go. But nonetheless this post is important to me because it represented one of my first public blog posts which would criticize the way the military is imag…

Kutturan Chamoru in Arizona!!!

Kutturan Chamoru Performers in Phoenix, AZ... March 15th!!

Calling all Chamorus in ARIZONA!! Come out and represent with KCP as we perform our 1st show in the State of Arizona. This is one of the largest Pacific Islander Festivals in the state.

For more info:

Date: Saturday, March 15th
Show time: 12 noon
Venue: Marketplace Stage

Located in downtown Phoenix, the Festival covers Heritage and Science Park, the ASU Downtown Center, and a closed city street. Ample parking is in the adjoining parking garages and on the streets surrounding the event - over 5,000 parking spaces are within the city block.

So come on out to the Aloha fun & it's FREEEEEE!!

For more info check out the Kutturan Chamoru myspace page.

From the Desk of Bernie Sanders

Published on Saturday, March 8, 2008 by
Changing Our National Priorities by Bernie Sanders There are three major trends in American society that must be addressed when the Senate next week debates the federal budget. First, the United States has the most unequal distribution of wealth and income of any major nation in the industrialized world, and the gap between the very rich and everyone else is growing wider. Second, it is a national disgrace that we have, by far, the highest rate of childhood poverty of any major country on earth. More than 18 percent of our kids live in poverty. Third, year after year, we have had record-breaking deficits and our national debt will soon be $10 trillion. That is a grossly unfair burden to leave to our kids and grandchildren. It also is economically unsustainable.I plan to offer an amendment that addresses these issues, to change our national priorities, and to move this country in a very different direction than where we have been …