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Updated: 2015-09-16T23:14:25.717-07:00

 



Muzzling Jordan Blogs Committee

2007-02-23T10:23:21.378-08:00

Why did Jordan Blogs committee vanish while the blog is still up and running!? I don't get it. I don't know if you guys volunteered to serve on your own or you were hand picked but all of you were able bodies and would have made a great deal of difference had this thing been given a chance to grow. You guys are professionals and intellectuals, a rare commodity these days especially in an arena where no one earns a penny for their work. I can't say enough about you guys even if I try : You Khalidah,Hala,Oula,Shaden,Mohammad,Wedad, all of you are the best of the best. Each in his own way contributes a unique feature unparalleled any where on any other Jordanian discussion list. I think that you were born to be a leader, I like how in one of those Jordanian bloggers meetings a while back you ordered everybody to shut up and then you took charge of the situation and straightened everything out. Then there is 7ala, she is a socializing machine just look at the number of replies that she gets for every entry she places on her blog. People from all over the Arab world, Europe, and the USA react to everything she writes about. Shaden too has an experience from Mahjoob, she was very active over there, I have been tracing her over the last 3 years or so, she had matured to a very sophisticated level. Oula works in Journalism any way in addition to having a degree in English.Wedad is well versed in theological matters and she adds a special aura to the discussion that is not solely mainstream but can easily be streamlined to suit the majority. Mohammad is technologically inclined; he too would have been a great asset to the bunch. Why did you guys dissolve we barely started knowing you and interacting with you. I hope that you re consider every start has its own bumpy road I hope that you guys didn't expect that everything is going to run smooth. Like they say: The grass isn't always greener on the other side. I usually don't write too many posts but I'm a good critic and good commentator, and I enjoy reading a lot. So please don't deprive me of all of these privileges. Thank you.



Sami Al-Arian

2007-02-16T10:54:49.991-08:00

http://www.sptimes.com/2007/02/16/State/Al_Arian_collapses_at.shtml



The justice department is unwittingly aiding Dr. Al-Arian to elevate his status to "Martyr". He is being harassed for refusing to testify to something that he already was absolved of testifying about in a previous plea bargaining agreement. You can beat a dead horse all year long; the dead horse isn't going to utter any audible sound. Intimidations, vilifications, demonizations, and demoralizations, aren't likely going to make him change his mind. If anything it will embolden him and ratchet the level of his resolve. Double jeopardy isn't an acceptable judicial practice, so why the justices are attempting to do something futile by shenanigan and chicanery. Dr. Alarian should be freed to pursue his and his family life or whatever left of it.



Assad's Guile

2007-02-05T09:43:14.043-08:00

In his usual mild mannered discourse President Assad of Syria presents himself as an open minded moderate leader that fully understands the complexities in his own country as well as the region as a whole, contrast that with the actual common living standards in Syria and the way the regime treats its opposition, you will get a completely different picture. President Assad has no interest in advancing the peace in Iraq, Lebanon, or Palestine. Syria thrives on the chaos in the countries surrounding its borders provided that the trouble doesn’t come roosting at home. In the summer of 2006 when Lebanon was getting obliterated by the Israeli air force, Syria didn’t raise even a whisper of opposition toward the aggression, and this year when Syria noticed the Palestinians and the Iraqis are killing themselves most ferociously, Syria remained silent. Mr. Assad is another ruthless Arab leader that wouldn’t hesitate to crush his opposition with an iron fist. He talks about the American using militarism to solve their problems in Iraq and most likely he too would be using ruthless militarism should any body tries to show any hint of dissention in Syria. It is amazing how one sees only what the other is doing at a time when one he is doing the same thing. Syria believes in military solutions as much as the American do, it already proved in its occupation of the Lebanese territories from the mid seventies until recently when they had to get out after the Hariri’s assassination. Syria doesn’t mind meddling in its neighbors affairs politically or militarily yet; it doesn’t sanction a similar action for any other Arab or non Arab country. Mr. Assad isn’t fooling anyone by portraying himself as a gentle, moderate, family man. He needs to start proving his words with his deeds.



Arabs shouldn't live in America

2007-01-19T09:39:52.280-08:00

It is very hard to be an Arab living in America, it is even much harder to be an Arab and a Muslim and living in America.Take me as one example of thousands of other never ever reported other examples across the nation. I work in mid management position in a Midwestern state for a commuter University. Every week during our staff meeting my Irish boss cracks a joke or two about my nationality.In one of our regular staff meetings he told me that he would feel much more comfortable if I would take my winter coat off and hang it in the closet prior to the start of the staff meeting so he can see what is underneath that coat. He was obviously implying that I might be wearing an explosives laden belt underneath my coat.I was very offended by his remarks but since he is my boss I didn't want to raise any stink about it for the fear that he would fire me. I have never discussed it with him until the present day and I don't know whether his fear was real or he was just trying to be witty. On another occasion I was touring the campus with one of my supervisors and we happen to walk through a narrow corridor in the back of one of the buildings all of a sudden we noticed a Muslim guy praying and kneeling on the floor, the supervisor's face started turning all kinds of colors he told me that the guy is getting ready to blow himself up, I said to him that isn't true, he is just praying and we better leave him alone, the supervisor didn't heed my call and told me that he feels like going to his locker room and retrieve his hand gun and come back to blow this praying guy head off. Luckily the incident ended up peacefully because by the time we finished our dialogue the guy had already finished his praying and went away. On a third occasion, I received a call from one of the University occupants complaining about no toilet tissue in the men's bathroom, part of my job consists of insuring that all of the University buildings are cleaned, sanitized, and well stocked. I went to the worker assigned to that particular facility and asked him why hasn't he been putting toilet tissue in the bath room, his response was that there are a lot of Muslim students on the floor and these students use a lot of toilet tissue to align around the toilet seats and that is why the washroom keeps on running out of tissue. What a lame excuse, instead of admitting his dereliction of duty he passed the buck and used the Muslim students as a scapegoat to explain his gross malfeasance. These are true instances that occurred with me personally, it clearly demonstrates the level of hysteria that is going on in the US about the Arabs and the Muslim. Thanks to Hollywood, the Christian evangelists, and the one sided main stream media. Arabs and Muslims are never going to get their reputation sanitized no matter how hard they try, there is an organized institutionalized bigotry directed against them by very sophisticated think tank institutions in collaboration with the main stream media. Even when Arabs try to explain themselves; the media doesn't give them a chance. I have personally written thousands of letters to the editors, of each five hundred letters I would be very lucky to have one of them get published, and that is only after I spend all of my efforts and knowledge trying to sanitize my letter so that it would look extremely neutral. I may sound like a cynic but believe me it is the honest truth, it is a fact that it is very hard to be an Arab & living in America.



Customer Loyalty

2007-01-12T12:30:40.726-08:00

Insofar as the business community in Jordan continues to ignore the fact that it exists because of its customers there isn't much hope that a way forward is in the offing any time soon.
Perks, incentive packages, token of appreciation are nothing but a surrogate band aid for the much needed customer service overhaul.
Customers are usually driven by durable goods, competitive prices, and exemplary services, anything else serves as a major cause for customer turn off.
Business owners can employ all kinds of marketing gimmicks to get the initial push for their products, but the educated consumers will launch counter offensive of their own by fairly quickly unmask the veneer and get down to the rotten core.
Consumers aren't hibernating all the time, they are constantly searching for ways to stretch their hard earned money, they are under extreme pressure to remain within a specified budget so they don't fall under in a deficit.
For this status to be accommodated, they need to go to the business that offers them the product for the price that they have in mind and not the price that had been set by the business community.
If we take bread as an example, a kilo of regular white bread can cost the consumer any where from fifteen piasters all the way to forty five piaster depending on the place that it was purchased from.
The consumer already know how much he wants to spend for that kilo of bread on a daily basis, so whether the bakery gives him an incentive or not, unless the price that he had set in his mind is being met the consumer isn't going to bother paying the higher price.
Business owners must understand that they must tread very delicately when it comes to their customer, they can't and shouldn't be gruff toward them. They need to keep them informed about what is in it for them not what is in it for the business owner, they need to let them know in simple terms why they should spend their hard earned cash at their place of business and not at their competitors place of business.For instance, on my own personal level, I have been buying my spices from Abdel Ra-him spice shop in down town Amman for the past thirty five years, he has the best products, he has the most competitive price, and he treats me very cordially each and every time I go there, he had never given me anything extra for free except perhaps letting me taste the new thyme at the tip of my tongue and the pickle by cutting a small slice that weighs less than couple grams.
But I'm fully satisfied and I keep coming back time and again and I have no intention of stopping any time in the near future unless one of the three elements that I have mentioned seizes to exist.
I conclude by suggesting that a) Competitive prices b) Excellent services c) Durable goods are the best reward that any business can offer to their customer, they supersede, all the perks, incentives, and phony gifts that are being currently offered.



Cab drivers

2007-01-12T07:50:36.583-08:00

Like I said before blogging to me consists of two things a) Commenting on news that I read, see, or hear, and b) Talking about something personal. Today I read in Elaph see the following link http://www.elaph.com/ElaphWeb/NewsPapers/2007/1/203417.htm that there are rising complaints about some Muslim cab drivers in the state of Minnesota, believed to be of Somali origins, selectively refuse to pick up passengers that are either having dogs with them, or consuming alcohol. I guess the Muslim drivers feel that the passengers are going to desecrate their cabs if the dogs were allowed to ride in it, and by the same token they feel that it is sinful to transport someone carrying alcohol beverage on him since the drivers may be considered an accomplice in the sin. According to the report, a religious scholar had advised them that they should refrain from doing that and it is perfectly alright to refuse servicing people like that. Now, give me a break, this is totally unacceptable and no one should fall for it. A cab driver is obligated to pick up anybody that is willing to pay for the service of transporting the passenger from point A to point B. The cab driver isn't a moral judge, he has no business of deciding who should and who shouldn't be riding in his cab, if he has problem with people with dogs or with people consuming alcohol then he should look for another job and leave the driving for someone else that doesn't mind transporting these people. Very soon the cab drivers will start saying that we aren't going to transport girls that are wearing short skirts because they are immodestly dressed, or we aren't going to transport women that aren't wearing Hijab. Since when cab drivers appointed themselves as moral judges?! I shouldn't be surprised because in Jordan many cab drivers follow the same pattern but only in the opposite direction, they would gladly run for the girls that are wearing short skirts and they would eschew from old infirm people walking with cane, in addition they get to decide whether the trunk of their car can get opened or not, more often than not the cab driver in Amman would tell you that the lock is inoperable so he doesn't have to bother himself to get out of the car and open the trunk. Worst of all he gets to decide if the destination that you are going to is appropriate or inappropriate, if he doesn't feel like driving you to that location he will give you five hundred excuses why he can't go there. I guess what I'm getting at in here is that the driver's attitude and not his faith is what determine his behavior. I bet that those Somali drivers are just plain nasty drivers and Islam has nothing to do with their decision not to pick up passengers with dogs or with alcohol, they just want to boost their own esteem by pretending that they have the right to refuse the service on religious ground. This comes at a time when religion specifically stated that necessities justify prohibitions. I don't know why cab drivers enjoy such a low self esteem, what I do hope that they don't use the faith be that the Muslim faith or any other faith to justify their ugly unacceptable behavior.



Arab leaders supplication

2007-01-11T08:48:35.510-08:00

Following is a translation of An Arabic version of the Arab leaders-- heads of states-- daily supplication to Allah. The Arabic text can be found here: http://www.akhbaruna.com/node/2768







Oh God prolong our stay in our reign



Bless us in it



Bequeath it to our heirs



Make our revenge on our people



Give us victory over whoever opposes us



Don’t expose our judging



Don’t concern us with the comfort of our people



We don’t want to know about it



Don’t let the military coup be our destiny



Make the presidential palace our home





Oh God we ask you for an extended reign period



And repulsion to our opposition



The patience towards our opponents



And victory over our people





Oh God we ask you for kindness



But never for the conclusion



Oh God give us donations so we don’t have to ever steal



Oh God don’t open our coffers for the others



Oh God give us the pass word for account numbers of the former rulers in the Swiss banks



Oh God please guide America to do whatever is best for us



Oh God forgive George Bush because he doesn’t know that we don’t know



Oh God let him have 99% of the votes



Oh God catapult his love for the Zionist lobby like a heart attack



Oh God don’t change him from the very first mistake



Oh God save him from any hurricane or natural disaster so we don’t get in trouble with our people



Oh God save us from our people, we will negotiate with our enemies



Oh God make my charcoal benign and my people’s charcoal malicious



Oh God give us the love of America



And those who love America



And the love of those who draw us closer to love America



Oh God why didn’t you relief me by letting me be born American



Oh God make me an American not an Afghani



Oh God make me British not Somali



Oh God make me French not Sudanese



Oh God make me German not Albanian



Oh God I’m innocent of asking any one of helping me to rule my people



Not even a friend or opinion polls



Oh God I seek refuge in you so my throne chair doesn’t get yanked



And from people that refuse to be subjugated



And from publication that couldn’t be stopped



And from sermon that couldn’t be heard



And from a citizen that couldn’t be coned



It is time off



Oh God I seek refuge from any action that will draw me near to you



Don’t cancel our supplications



Don’t recycle us



And always leave us in service until perpetuity, Oh God most merciful.



Jordanian daily newspapers

2007-01-03T09:59:33.824-08:00

I don't understand why the Jordanian daily newspapers stop printing during the 4 --day holiday celebrating the grand festival of sacrifice, it is as if life come to a stand still on the morning of the Eid, it is as if there are no more road accidents to report about, no people stranded in a snow storm, no local news about the Eid, no regional news like the execution of Saddam Hussein, the pilgrimage's [Haj] season, no international news to show what is happening in the world.

I'm not sure who decides that the Jordanian dailies stop printing for four days on the row, whomever it may be it certainly is a very unwise decision. It isn't like one of the papers would take a different route and decides to continue printing, they all come to a screeching halt altogether. It is as if the decision was collectively made amongst all of the editors combined, or perhaps the Jordan Press association orders them not to print.

I really don't know what to think of it all of what I'm saying is that I'm mad as hell, and not just from this Eid but from every Eid. What is the person supposed to do in terms of news from Jordan! I admit it I'm a hard core news junkie, I must read every Jordanian newspaper every day of the week. I start with Alghad, then I go to the Jordan times, Alrai, alarab alyoum, Al Dustoor, and then I finish my reading by going to the Jordan information center website to see if there is any thing that I may have missed in them other papers that I just finished reading.

Now you can see my plight, since last Saturday morning I feel like there was something precious that got lost from me, and the more I think about it the more that I realize that in fact I haven't lost anything and all there is--is that I'm suffering withdrawal symptoms due to the fact that the Jordanian daily newspapers aren't getting printed.

I hope that someone wise up and notice that perhaps there are quite few Jordanian citizens around the world that are news junkie just like me, and they would very much appreciate it if they would give up that habit of not printing newspapers during the Eid holiday we would be in a much better shape and mood; and we would treat the people around us with a much more gentler and kinder attitude since we will not be suffering from withdrawal symptoms.

The editors should seize the opportunity and use the Eid holiday days to do more advertising about things people can do during the Eid, about places that will be offering discounts after the Eid holiday, about the weather, the airline schedule, about what to do in case of emergency and so on and so forth. I'm sure that they don't need somebody like me to tell them what to put on the pages of their newspapers, all I'm saying is that I wish that they would find a reason or two on why they should continue printing during the holiday. The Jordan Times for instance took two holidays not just one, they didn't print during the Christmas holiday and they didn't print during the grand festival of sacrifice holiday. That is a double whammy to say the least.
I don't know about any body's else but I'll continue with my quest to fight for my right to read the news coming out of Jordan during the Muslim as well as during the Christian holidays, I have no idea if my wish will ever materialize but in the event that during the 2007 holiday season the newspapers continue with their usual abstention, so will I continue with my protest to have them printed.



Blogging

2007-01-02T09:25:39.563-08:00

I recently heard some where on the news and for god sake don't ask me for a source because this isn't scientific or anything like that, any way, what I heard is that blogging is about two things. a) It is either about something you read or hear in the news and you get a strong feeling about it and then you decide to comment on it in a blog format, or --b) blogging is something like a personal diary where you write about your daily life activities, friends and family, pictures and songs, and so on and so forth. I happen to believe that these two definitions represent the closest thing that I have seen of what represent what the blog is all about. Blogging isn't an alternative form of Journalism, something that I used to believe some time ago when blogging was first introduced into our realm. Blogging isn't a platform for political activists although it was heavily used during the 2004 presidential election in the United States when thousands of Howard Dean supporters used the inter-net to raise money through their blog move-on.com. Blogging to a lesser extent is beginning to suffer the fate of what the traditional newspapers were facing when the blog-sphere started showing up on the internet. It is slowly being taken over by more advanced technologies such as you tube and what have you. Some people would rather watch thousands of video clips a day instead of reading a 250 word essay. Watching is a heck of a lot easier than reading, that is why we see our children glued to the tube watching cartoon from when they are very little, they prefer watching any hour of the day over reading a story or even listen to someone reading the story for them unless that some one is reading for them at bed time to help them fall asleep. So is blogging as we know it on its way to extinction? I don't know and I'm not going to be the one to forecast that inevitable outcome. The recent explosion of blogs throughout the globe is mind boggling phenomenon, millions of bloggs are being created in a very short period of time. I remember few years back when Yahoo groups were very popular, every one I know wanted to start a Yahoo group, and to be honest with you I started one my self and I managed that group for about a year and a half and there were at least 2000 entries by about 16 people that were in my group, but then comes a time when you start thinking what is this for! what is it all about! and then soon enough you start lowering the curtain little by little until you get to the zero point when the curtain gets shut tight. I'm wondering if this is exactly what happened to the crew that were managing Jordan Planet, they simply got burned out with all of the incoming entries all day and all night from all parts of the world, and in the end there was no reward to be had, not even a word of appreciation, just complaints after complaints, so whomever the decision maker was decided what the heck, I'm losing time and effort here that ends up being thankless, and so out of the bloom decided to put the planet to sleep. I'm sure that we will see many more discussion groups go to sleep as well, believe me I know, I started joining these discussion groups back in 1996, and since then I have been in and out of at least a dozen of them, Jordan Planet being the most recent one, before that it was netsonline.jo, and before that it was Mahjoob.com, and before that It was Jordannet.net, alawda, free palestine, palestine media watch, Arab writers, and many more that my memory fails me to remember all of them right now. In sum I have a feeling that blogging is going to go out of style, it would still be there but it wont be as effective as it has been over the past five years or so, I have a feeling that the future belongs to the tube which means that places like Youtube will have the upper hand in the coming few years, but as far as blogging goes[...]



What It means

2007-01-01T13:22:53.959-08:00

2007

I fail to understand what does the new year mean, in simple terms it means nothing. What is the difference between December 31, and January 1!.There is obviously no difference whatsoever. Some people say that the new year supposed to bring with it new hope, new things. I say nonsense, it isn't going to bring anything different than what the previous year brought, or the upcoming year will bring, it is much of the same good old hog wash.
I enter 2007 with much more apprehension than when I entered 2006 & 2005 combined. I'm trying to look within myself for a title to characterize my feeling with it, but the deeper I look the more emptiness that I find. It is like an empty space that is leading into another empty space and so and so forth.I'm not sure what triggered this grim feeling, it isn't Saddam's execution, I can care less for his brand, it isn't the Palestinian problem, I grew numb to that long lasting problem, it isn't Lebanon because these people have been fighting since 1975. It isn't health or family issue because they both are in good shape, it isn't employment issue, I'm employed in a fairly stable & good paying job. So what is the source of all of this melancholy, I have no idea, if and when I have it figured out I'll let you know, meanwhile, tomorrow I go back to work to start the so called new year. What is so new about it I have no idea, it seems to me like just another day with new date that is about it.