Saturday, January 29, 2011

More Dominos Falling in the Middle East?

My Journey From Being Kicked out of the Nile Hilton on a Prez Visit

to Today’s Egypt:

More Dominos Falling in the Middle East?

How many people do you know who were kicked out of the Nile Hilton hotel in Cairo Egypt – because a visiting U.S. President needed it to negotiate (successfully) the first-ever peace treaty between Egypt and Israel?

Well, it happened to me, when I was on a trip for a Houston Fortune 500 company when the President’s team needed the hotel to finish the negotiations. So I watch today’s events in Egypt from a special perspective.

It was either late 1978 or early 1979 when I was sent to Cairo to help our oil service company resolve some issue. Phone calls back to the U.S. required an advance booking and a 4 hour wait for it to go through, if you were lucky. Phone service across Cairo was so unreliable that our company, and everyone else, used messengers to communicate across the city. I had been booked at the Nile Hilton. One day there was a knock at the door and a person said that it was required that I vacate the room by 5 pm the next day. I ended up staying as a guest at the manager’s house. Only then did we find out that President Carter had flown into Cairo to help finalize the first-ever peace treaty between an Arab nation, Egypt and Israel.

Being in the middle of an event like that sticks in your mind. In 1981 while in a hotel room in Brussels I watched a TV in a language I didn’t understand (French) showing pictures of Egypt’s Anwar Sadat being assassinated – for signing that treaty with Israel. Then Mubarak took over – and it has been him ever since, almost 30 years! (Years later, after losing that global job, I produced a TV program in the mid-90’s with a weapons expert from the Reagan administration, warning that a terrorist attack could come against the U.S. – no one was listening).

From that perspective I see what is happening in first Tunisia and now Egypt as stunning. Autocratic states (take note Huge Chavez) can’t produce jobs. Over half of the young men in Egypt can’t get jobs or live on $2 or $3 a day. College graduates end up selling fruit. The gap between rich and poor was a grand canyon. No opposition groups were allowed to seek election – (imagine a U.S. Congress were 100% of the members were from one party). It bred frustration. It was a steamer pot that finally had too much pressure inside until it blew off the top.

Now what?

Egypt is special because it is a leader among the Arab nations. What happens in Tunisia matters far less than what happens in Egypt. The revolution sweeping Egypt opens Pandora’s box and it could go either way, with little the U.S. can do. We could end up with a moderate leader like El Baradei, who unfortunately does not have a base – or we could end up with the extremist Muslim Brotherhood, which does have an organization.

This revolution was not started by the Muslim Brotherhood. It came from ordinary Egyptians sick of not having either opportunities or a voice in their own government. Americans complain about our leaders, but at least we can go to the polls and register our preferences. Egyptians could not – each vote Mubarak won by over 99% of the vote – much like Mr. Putin in Russia.

Dicey days lie ahead. We very well could be seeing the start of a series of dominos falling in the Middle East – lack of political freedoms and lack of jobs for the mass of young and restless bode for big changes that could feel like the worst roller coaster ride you’ve ever been on.

The best thing for Americans to do is to support the people of Egypt. The President has called on Mubarak not to use force against his own people – that’s important. He should encourage Mubarak to set up a transition government and bow out – before the extremists hijack this once in a century event. The U.S. should insist that the Egyptian Internet/cell service be restored.

The Egyptian military is also key, and we do hold a financial card that could influence what they do. You can bet that they do not want to lose over $1.5 billion in annual money, which would definitely occur if extremists took over -- like Iran in 1978.

The rest of it is up to the Egyptians – the choice of their leader is not our call, but theirs.

But we can support them by giving the people the ‘thumbs up’ and helping them obtain alternate Internet servers to continue their coordination efforts before it gets crushed as happened in Iran after the last fraud election.

And you can keep up with developments, and comment, at our Global American Values blog at:

Check out our radio programs on this and other global issues that impact America’s future 24/7 on (click on Favorite programs and pick one)

Michael Fjetland

Global American Series

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Journey From Being Kicked out of the Nile Hilton on a Prez Visit to Today’s Egypt:

My Journey From Being Kicked out of the Nile Hilton on a Prez Visit

to Today’s Egypt:

More Dominos Falling in the Middle East?

How many people do you know who were kicked out of the Nile Hilton hotel in Cairo Egypt – because a visiting U.S. President needed it to negotiate (successfully) the first-ever peace treaty between Egypt and Israel? Well, it happened to me, when I was on a trip for a Fortune 500 company when the President’s team needed the hotel to finish the negotiations. So I watch today’s events in Egypt from a special perspective.

That’s why you should tune in to today’s Global American Radio program at 9 am Central, “Winning the Future: Or Sabotaging It?” on Business 1110 AM, streamed on and podcast 24/7 on www.

Egypt has nearly half of its young unemployed. The U.S. could be moving in that direction if some have their way. Today we compare what is happening in Texas to the United States – versus the world on Global American radio…

We will cover Egypt and its impact on the U.S> in full in the days ahead. Stay tuned...

Friday, January 28, 2011

Winning the Future – Or Sabotaging It?

What is happening in Texas and in the U.S. Congress, it is a study in contrasts - and similarities.

The question is whether the actions proposed on each side will either “Win Our Future” – Or sabotage it. Here are some headlines that lay out the cold facts and hard truth that we face as a nation, and as a state:








So what is our solution? The goal of Global American is to regain and retain No. 1 in the World.

In the middle of the biggest economic crisis in Texas history – a record $15 to $30 billion shortfall, the first order of business for the GOP dominated Texas legislature this week was….Voter ID!

This is the Governor’s No. 1 declared emergency after a sweep election? Today Texas ranks 50th (dead last) in providing health care coverage and mental health services to children. Texas has more fatalities from child abuse and neglect than any other state in the nation. Texas’ solution? Laying off 80,000 teachers – our state’s brain trust --cutting health services for children and ending the TEXAS Grants that has provided financial aid to new college students. According to Steve Murdock of Rice University, these statistics “do not bode well for our future.”

Is this the nation’s role model of success? How will cutting 25% from health and education services for Texas/American children who lag every state in the nation help us compete with the world whose math and science skills are better than ours?

How will dropping 200,000 more children from pre-K help Texas - or our nation - develop the next generation of highly skilled workers and competitive citizens to achieve world leadership in a global high tech 21st century? Or do we just dominate the burger flipping sector?

Cutting education in this new world economy –where the national winner is the one with the newest, best technology-- is like committing economic suicide. Without a laser focus on education America risks becoming a nation of burger flippers losing out in a world of PhD’s who will be inventing new 21st century technologies. China now has the fastest supercomputer in the world. Complacency and misguided priorities are not our friend. The USA is even throwing out PhD’s our universities train – so they have to leave the U.S. - and compete against us instead of helping us maintain our high-tech edge.

Did you know that less than 1/3 of our Congress reps have a passport? That means they have not been outside the USA. That means they have no idea of what is really going on in other countries we are competing with. Until I went to China, I had read books. None of it prepared me for what I found. That means that our own Congress reps don’t understand the huge advances being made in places like China and India that are catching up --and passing us-- in high technology, or how a trade war is not in our best interest (every $1 billion on our exports is another 50,000 jobs in USA).

On Saturday’s Global American radio program, we discuss how to return America to No. 1 (it will take a global strategy). We will talk about how failure to invest in American cutting edge technology and the education needed by our citizens to invent and manufacture tomorrow’s products could kill off what future we have. We are fiddling while our own Rome burns.

Texas No. 50 in the percentage of people with high school diplomas is not going to put Texas in the lead in the future any more than it will help the USA that our education system is now ranked just “average” according to the OECD. “This is a wakeup call for America” says Arne Duncan. That’s mild. I call it American economic suicide.

Listen in Saturday at 9 am Central on Business 1110 AM, streamed on (or 24/7 under ‘Favorite Programs’ podcast on -- see if you don’t agree with some of my proposed solutions -- that we need to get our priorities right, assume some personal responsibility, and not discard our national brain trust of teachers which undercuts the next generation of Americans. We are at a national crossroads, made all the harder now that our status as the world’s No. 1 creditor nation was lost a decade ago.

Texans and Americans could be devastated by short sighted actions on our part at this crucial juncture. Listen as we discuss solutions – including things like tax reform, on Global American radio.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Saturday at 9 on GA Radio: An American Pledge to Civility

Saturday at 9 on GA Radio: An American Pledge to Civility

If we are to avoid more tragedies like the Tucson shooting of Rep. Giffords and innocents like 9 year old Christina, the conversation needs to change.

We talk about that in this week’s “Global American Radio” program, at 9 am Central Saturday, Jan. 15 on Business 1110 AM, streamed on and podcast 24/7 at

Americans must return to being able to disagree without being disagreeable. We need a return, as the President said, to civility. We need a return to showing respect for each other, as our fathers and grandfathers did. The last thing someone sent me before the shooting was a video of Speaker Boehner being handed a giant gavel by Nancy Pelosi, then hitting her with it, knocking her to the floor. I didn’t find it funny, but it speaks to the problem we have. Our humor has become as violent as our video games.

What does this incident say about our mental health system? Texas is about to cut its funding for mental health, and it ranks 49th out of 50 states in providing mental health funding.

What does this incident say about where to draw the line on offensive guns versus defensive guns. Do you really need a 30 clip for defense? How many fewer people would have died if the shooter had the normal 9 shot clip, including a 9 year old girl? Does the 2nd amendment mean you can own a nuke or a grenade? Or walk with a machine gun near where the President is speaking, as has happened?

Where do we go from here? Back to the days of Wyatt Earp and Tombstone? More shouting "You lie!" during a State of the Union speech?

We need a return to higher ethics and civility. By all of us.

In Saturday’s program, we talk about the guiding principles that our forefathers’ practiced: Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Does it build goodwill and better friendships? This is what all Americans should use as their personal and business ethics.

Or will people slide back to slash and burn politics? The kind that even justifies making up false facts in the name of unconditional political warfare in the fight for control (like alleged ‘death panels’) – the kind that it can incite the unbalanced to commit more hideous crimes like the one we just witnessed? That answer has to come from American political leadership.

I call on the new Congress, and all Americans, to take our Global American 4 way test. Let’s practice civility even when we disagree. America stands for ballots over bullets. Tune in at 9am Saturday to this special program on Global American radio…

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Sunday, January 9, 2011

We are AMERICANS: we choose ballots over bullets

I am so sorry for the Tucson people killed by the idiot at a Congressional meeting. We have let the nut jobs blow too long.

We are AMERICANS: we choose ballots over bullets. We don't need to follow the nut jobs in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan - they prefer the bullet. That is what makes us unique, or has.

We can disagree without shooting people. We've allowed extremists to make millions spreading false facts on radio and TV, calling the President "Imam" etc. Yes, I'm talking about the jerks Limbaugh and Beck.

Do you want to know what causes nut jobs to shoot people, including a Congressional rep?

People like this: Rush Gasbag and Glenn Beckenstein. Listen to the false hysteria promoted by these two con jobs.They lie to million of American people for profit - not for TRUTH.

They shout "Fire" in a crowded theater: radio and TV.

They falsely claim the President was not born in the U.S. or the biggest lie that an American President would actually try to sabotage the U.S. They put crosshairs on the political opponents, as Palin did. They shout "reload!"

We are AMERICANS: we choose ballots over bullets. We have to return to respecting people and civil dialogue, and TRUTH. It matters for our future.