Author Archives: davidgroen1

Bush, Clinton, the Borg, and the futility of the voting process

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As a fan of Star Trek the phrase “resistance is futile” comes to mind when thinking about the American presidential election process.  For those who are not Star Trek geeks like me, this refers to the alien race known as the Borg that appeared in some of the Star Trek series and movies and had their way with every race they wished to assimilate into their culture. For the most part I am not a conspiracy theorist, so I am not that guy who believes that a few people have predetermined who is going to run things, but I do believe our democracy is controlled by money and power and when deciding the presidency, any resistance is indeed an act of futility.  When it comes to money and power on the Republican side, the Bush family is certainly entrenched near or at the top of the pile. Although the Clinton’s don’t wield the same amount of either money or power as the Bush clan does, they’ve achieved a power and influence within the Democratic party that leaves Hilary Clinton virtually unchallenged in her pursuit of the presidency.  Is this a good thing? I guess it depends on who you ask.

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We could start by saying that the fact that “resistance is futile” is never a good thing.  Of course this is up for debate since there are plenty of Republicans who will tell you they prefer Scott Walker,Ted Cruz, even Rand Paul or any of the other cast of characters throwing their hat into the ring, but the reality is that once the Bush people start spending their money and wielding their influence it’s hard to see anyone else in the Republican party winning the nomination.  From the Democratic Party side, even if one was a strong supporter of the Bill Clinton presidency, some questions still remain at the wisdom of a Hilary candidacy.  Maybe she would rise to the top of a more competitive field anyway, but the reality is that she is so assured of the nomination that Republican hopefuls already find themselves campaigning against her. So the truth is, not only is resistance futile, one might say voting is as well.

I’m a sports fan.  I love when the outcome of a season is uncertain.  So 2 years ago in the NFL when Seattle predictably made it to the Super Bowl against Denver, and to many predictably won the game, despite my love for the sport I was not thrilled by what I watched that entire postseason. I always love the presidential election cycle.  I find it enthralling, exciting, even fascinating.  I find it hard to stop watching.  Unfortunately this time I find it very predictable and subsequently losing a lot of its luster.  I am rather certain it will be a Bush against a Clinton, and since the Democrats just had 8 years in the White House, most likely it ends up with the Bush winning.  I won’t even talk about who I like better and whether or not I think either one would be good for the country, because in the end this is how it will turn out regardless, and my opinion, let alone my vote, will have no impact on the end result.  The frightening part to all of this is that this upcoming presidential election may be one of the most important in recent history and the American people are at the mercy of the money and power of a small group of people.

At least that’s my opinion. If it turns out otherwise I’ll eat crow, but I’m rather confident it won’t. After all, resistance is futile.


What Would you Like to Read?

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Just taking a quick moment to ask those who read Holland’s Heroes their thoughts on what they would like to see written on the site.  What inspires you? What do you think is time well spent? What do you think helps the cause and what do you think might actually hurt the cause?  I would like your input.  In the meantime I thank those who have taken the time to read the content of Holland’s Heroes and hope I can continue to capture your interest.

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Open Letter to Dianne Feinstein

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Dear Senator Feinstein,

I remember watching you on an interview after Prime Minister Netanyahu addressed Congress and even then I was struck by the arrogant attitude you displayed towards the Israeli Head of State. With that in mind your recent statements come as no shock to me despite the incredulous lack of logic in your words.

First of all, you say the Iranians are “sincere” about wanting a deal.  Well thank you Captain Obvious.  Of course they want a deal.  This is the best thing that could have happened to them.  They get everything they want. A lifting of sanctions, a place on the world stage, and a nuclear program that could very well wind up making them the most dangerous nation on earth.  It doesn’t take a brain surgeon or even a Senator from California to realize that Iran would be happy with this arrangement.  So to say that they are sincere about wanting a deal, is nothing less than a waste of breath.

You then go on to say that you disagree that “the broad outlines of the deal threaten the survival of Israel”.  If this deal increases the likelihood of Iran getting nuclear weapons that statement is just ludicrous.  Iran has repeatedly stated that it wants to wipe Israel off the planet.  Therefore basic logic would dictate that an Iran with nuclear weapons would indeed be a threat to Israel’s survival.

When discussing Netanyahu’s stance you say,

 “I wish that he would contain himself, because he has put out no real alternative, in his speech to the Congress, no real alternative, since then, no real alternative.”

Personally I am offended by anyone, particularly a Jewish leader speaking so disrespectfully about the Prime Minister of Israel, but I guess you are so partisan in your policies that you believe it is important to speak of him this way in order to support President Obama.  As far as the crux of the statement is concerned, if someone speaks out against someone’s desire to commit suicide but doesn’t give the individual an alternative way to live their life, should they therefore be in favor of suicide?  Based on your statement suicide would be the right move, not just for the individual in this hypothetical scenario, but based on this policy, for the United States as well.

It so happens that Prime Minister Netanyahu does have an alternative which is

“standing firm, ratcheting up the pressure (through continued sanctions), until you get a better deal.”

Of course you are opposed to this because you are seeing through partisan blinders and they are causing you to support the president in a deal with a distrustful government with the ambition of radicalizing the entire planet. Your own statement in response to Netanyahu’s comment only shows how illogical dealing with Iran is when you say, that the path of sanctions would drive Iran’s program underground and make it more difficult to monitor.  How do you get from that to believing this is a legitimate partner in peace?  I don’t believe that you do.  Instead I believe you are playing partisan politics at its worst, even when it is detrimental to the safety of the State of Israel, the United States of America, and ultimately the entire western world.

To me this is poor and irresponsible leadership that will not only hurt the country, but the political party you clearly deem more important than anything else.  Not to mention the fact that as a Jew, it is my opinion, and one shared by many others, that in supporting this deal you are supporting a policy that puts the Jewish nation and Jews everywhere in danger.  I hope you can live with that.

Sincerely,

David Groen

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Open Letter to Lauryn Hill

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Dear Ms. Hill,

I’ve written many letters over the past few years to various celebrities regarding their stance on Israel and in many cases I have very little trouble putting my sentiment into words.  However, if I am to take your statement on face value I find myself in a more difficult position today, because on one side there is the indication of genuineness on your part, while on the other side, even if your intentions started off pure, you now have a greater responsibility as a result of your actions.  That responsibility is to the truth.

I am of course referring to your recent decision to cancel your performances in Israel.  While you did not make any indication that you were challenging the position or behavior of the Israeli government, many on social media have taken your decision and used it as an opportunity to express their vile and unwarranted hatred for Israel and the Jewish people.  You made the following statement:

It is very important to me that my presence or message not be misconstrued, or a source of alienation to either my Israeli or my Palestinian fans.

My entire motivation for this letter to you can be taken back to that statement included in your letter in which you stated your decision to cancel the trip to Israel.  For all the times I have confronted blatant anti-Semites, unapologetic haters of Israel, and celebrities biased against fairness towards the Jewish people, I personally will choose to give you the benefit of the doubt and take your words as being honest and well-meant. However Ms. Hill, the catch to all of this is that for your words to carry meaning you need to back them up with some action.

I have often said that as a human-being I have no problem with people caring about the well-being of innocent Palestinian civilians as long as they do so with acceptance of the facts as to the true factors causing their plight and most importantly, that their concern is not at the expense of the citizens of the State of Israel.  If it is truly very important to you that your message not be misconstrued, now is the time to make certain it is not.  Follow up your statement with a comment stating your cancellation was based on logistical problems not on protest against Israeli policy. Based on your own words you have a responsibility to do just that, for your message is not only being misconstrued, it is being misrepresented, manipulated and exploited by those who look for every opportunity to attack Israel and the Jewish people.  To be quite frank with you Ms. Hill, this will also tell the world whether or not you truly did run into logistical issues or you were merely succumbing to pressure from the haters of the Jewish state.

So yes Ms. Hill, I am challenging you.  I do so because you have an unprecedented opportunity. You can show an equal concern for both Palestinians and Israelis in a manner not often seen in today’s world.  However to do so honestly you now have to stand up and defend Jewish people.  Please don’t let us down.  Please be true to your word.  How you respond to these concerns will determine whether or not you are just another hater without the courage of your convictions, or a genuine woman trying her best to use her art to make everyone’s life better.  I certainly hope it turns out to be the latter.

Sincerely,

David Groen

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Open Letter to Jimmy Carter

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Dear Mr. Carter,

Since I know fully well that appealing to you from the standpoint of a Jewish man would be a waste of time, I will instead appeal to you as an American citizen.  Let me however begin by  saying that I truly believe that appealing to you from any reasonable position is a waste of time, but in the hope that I can somehow get through to you, I will at least do some due diligence. Even more important, I hope that people who do actually read this become even more aware of your devious and detrimental contribution to the security of the nation you once officially lead.

I use the word officially, because in being one of the worst presidents this great nation has ever seen you really provided very little leadership.  I have said before and will say again that in my opinion your mishandling of the Iranian situation when you were the Commander-in-Chief is a very significant reason why we not only have Iran to worry about today, but its numerous and growing satellite terrorist organizations and nations. In fact  if one were to believe you purposely mishandled Iran, your current support for Hamas would fall perfectly in line with your previous actions. Personally I do not believe you calculated this outcome, instead I believe it is rooted in two basic premises.  You have a dislike for the Jewish people that is deep-rooted and rather obvious, and you came to terms with your failings in foreign affairs by choosing to prop up organizations that would legitimize the disaster that was your presidency.  Case in point, your support for Hamas.

I started this letter by stating that I would appeal to you as an American.  Although I believe you to be too egotistical and arrogant to respond to this letter even if you do actually read it, I do believe that as a former President of the United States and someone sworn to protect us, you should let the American people know how you find any justification in publicly supporting a terrorist organization such as Hamas.  How do you feel showing such warmth and support for the terrorist leader Khaled Mashaal is beneficial to our country and what it stands for?  You then turn around and say that meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would be a waste of time. Why? Because in your mind it’s better to work with a terrorist than a Jew.  Nothing you can say or do at this point will make it appear otherwise, and for any decent clearheaded person to take you seriously at this point you would need to make a dramatic change in your words and actions.

The more you talk the more difficult it becomes for me to show you the basic respect I wish to show you for the mere fact that you once held the position of President of the United States. I will just say that in my opinion it is you who are a waste of time, and that your participation in foreign affairs does nothing other than hurt the interests of all Americans, not just the Jewish people you have very little interest in protecting.  I hope you continue to enjoy your photo ops with the murderers you so clearly respect and that the people who matter become more and more aware of your disingenuous and harmful intentions.

Sincerely,

David Groen

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Open Letter to Roger Waters

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Dear Roger,

I wonder if you realize how transparent you truly are. You claim to be concerned about human rights when in truth your agenda revolves more around the fact that you clearly despise the concept of a Jewish government.   It is obvious to anyone listening that the only time you use your voice is to either rake in the cash on music written 30 plus years ago or to try to destroy the State of Israel.

It’s very sad really.  You could have used your fame and fortune for so much good.  Instead you’ve chosen the path of destruction against a country with the best human rights record in the Middle East.  The facts show how disingenuous you are in your persistent attack. As much as I believe Israel does the right thing, if your voice was proportionately loud in regard to true humans rights violations I’d pay less attention to you.  How come I don’t hear you going after ISIS?  Why do you remain silent about 200,000 dead in Syria’s civil war?  We all see how you are trying to bully Robbie Williams into not playing in Israel by speaking of the 500 children who were victims of the war in Gaza.  I saw an estimate that said at least 7,000 children have been killed in Syria.  Is that not worth your time Roger?  Even if the death of those 500 children are solely the responsibility of the government of Israel, something honest people know not to be the case, I still wonder why 500 children matter so much more to you than 7,000.  Maybe because it is not really about the children.

What about the thousands of women being raped and abused by ISIS? You are so quiet about that as well.  If you are such a humanitarian wouldn’t you be spending most of your waking hours fighting for causes that involved tens, even hundreds of thousands of victims. Victims of regimes and organizations making no bones about their intent to rape and murder their victims.

I noticed you played a few concerts in Russia.  Do you have anything to say about the treatment of gays and lesbians in Putin’s Russia?  Of course you don’t, because Russia isn’t the problem in your eyes, Israel is.

People like you are partially responsible for the change in discussion from those claiming to be Liberals.  They look at someone like you, a famous musician, and feel that you have a true understanding of moral and tolerant values.  In truth what you really are is a high-profile anti-Semitic con-artist.  You clearly hate Jews and subsequently hate the idea of a Jewish government. Your continuous onslaught makes it very clear that you will be happy with nothing less than the destruction of the State of Israel, and in your perfect world based on how you have behaved over the years, I assume you are more than happy to see it come along with as many dead Jews as possible.

Be aware that the only people who accept your crap are those who want to believe anything that hurts the Jewish people.  For a man whose music was once perceived as being so thoughtful and clever, your actions and words against Israel are remarkably ignorant and very obvious.  I would say that what you are really doing is making a fool of yourself, but unfortunately there are enough Jew-hating idiots out there for you to have quite a following.

You could have represented a modern-day growth and development of culture in society, but instead your hatred for the Jewish people has driven you towards a narrow and destructive way of thinking.  I have no problem saying that I would be very happy to see you so consumed by your hate that it ultimately destroys you.  It would appear to some extent that it already has. You are just too blind to see it.

Sincerely,

David Groen

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To Properly Remember is to Always Know

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As I sit here with my limited understanding of what it means to remember those that gave their lives for the State of Israel, I realize that my personal obligation and responsibility is relatively easy when put side by side with those who have sacrificed so much.  In just a few words I will try to convey my feeling as to the basic effort I believe is incumbent on all of us who love Israel and the Jewish people.

I lived in Israel for 3 1/2 years.  Although that was many years ago I fell in love with the place. For me, someone raised in a strong Jewish household and the son of Holocaust survivors, I grasped the importance of the State of Israel at a young age.  That being said, I never had to do what so many others have done and continue to do to ensure its existence and security.  All I have ever been is a beneficiary of other’s sacrifice.

Having been  raised by 2 wonderful parents that suffered through the hardships of Nazi occupation and woke up to the horror of losing their family and friends, the concept of remembrance has always been paramount in my mind.   I write a little, speak a little, and try to show as much honor and respect as I can, but in the end I have personally concluded that there is only one way for me to truly show honor and respect.  That is to always remember.  Not just on Yom HaZikaron but every time I think of the blessing of the State of Israel.  Every time a member of the Israeli Defense Forces “IDF” is lost in battle, every time I meet a former member of the IDF, and every time I read or hear the tragedy of another lost soul to a terrorist attack.  I try to do more than just remember on one day, I try to make it part of my consciousness.

It is not easy to live with certain knowledge when that knowledge is painful or horrific, but when comparing oneself to someone who experienced it personally, to always be aware of what took place is a small price to pay.  For all those who have sacrificed so that we as Jews can have country we call our own, I am fortunate that all I need to do is always know the sacrifice they made for me.  In that way, in some small manner, I try to honor them every day.

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