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Philip Kraske

                 
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A SHORT BIO

I was born in Detroit in 1959, though I lived my formative years in Stillwater, Minnesota, a town just south of Garrison Keillor's Lake Wobegon, or at least one of the villages he based it on. I graduated from Stillwater High in 1977 and from the University of Minnesota at Minneapolis in 1983; I have a B.A. in International Relations. I took a leisurely six years to finish my college education. Along the way I studied in both Spain and France, and saw most of western Europe; I also learned Portuguese.

I have always been an English teacher -- work I stumbled into as a student in Madrid. Finishing college, I lived in Quito, Ecuador, where I taught English. I also traveled around South America, visiting almost every country, most notably Brazil, and have been back to Ecuador and Brazil since then, traveling and researching books.

I settled permanently in Madrid in 1985, and married a few years later. I keep my bread buttered by teaching English courses on a freelance basis in Spanish companies in the Madrid area. If you look at my web page, you'll see that half is for my English business.

I give an hour, maybe two, of class, then pack up my briefcase and leave behind my students clinched to their computer screens; I can never be too grateful to teaching. My work also gives me time to write, every morning roughly between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. (the Spanish lunch hour), since at that time Spaniards are too busy raising company profits to ponder the mysteries of the verb Get.
As to my writing, I will only say that, as in holding English class for seven bank technocrats at 8 a.m., I try to speak brightly, move things briskly, and teach minimally. No example should be without its humor, no lesson without its respect for people's intelligence.

And so from my perch in Spain I write about America, and try to offer the perspective of one who can see it both inside and outside, both the trees and the woods. It is an extraordinary time in the nation's history, especially regarding the growing contempt between the governors and the governed. It will end badly. But in the meantime, what a magnificent spectacle, like one of Tintoretto's immense canvases boiling with humanity. Damn the falling rates of literacy; it's a great time to write novels.

OpEdNews Member for 161 week(s) and 0 day(s)

16 Articles, 0 Quick Links, 24 Comments, 0 Diaries, 0 Polls

Articles Listed By Date   List By Popularity

Sunday, June 29, 2014     

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Who lost Iraq? The amoral
(2 comments) 'Who lost Iraq?' is a less important question than 'Who destroyed Iraq?'.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014     

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A good old American tug on the fraying fabric of peace
(1 comments) A comment on how helpless observers of the international scene are in the face of so many bad American decisions.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014     

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Yet another failure of the U.S. policy elite
(2 comments) The Ukraine-Crimea matter is another failure of a foreign-policy elite that can do almost nothing right.

Saturday, February 8, 2014     

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Is Sochi the "Sarajevo Moment"?
(5 comments) An observation of how President Vladimir Putin's dream of the Sochi Olympic Games is going up in smoke, and the dangerous repercussions his anger might have.

Thursday, December 19, 2013     

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The year everything got worse
(4 comments) On America losing prestige and Obama's expectations turning to dust. Not even Lazarus could come back from this one.

Friday, September 20, 2013     

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Toothless policies and toothy publics
(2 comments) This is about the growing gap between governing elites and the public, mainly with regard to America, but also Europe.

Monday, August 26, 2013     

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Syria and sarin: such is politics
(8 comments) On the nonsense surrounding the UN investigation into the use of chemical weapons in Syria.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013     

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Edward Snowden and the Gentlemen's Trash Talk
(7 comments) Fareed Zakaria, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Richard Haas, and Bret Stephens of the Wall Street Journal all ganged up on Edward Snowden last weekend. i thought these gentlemen of the establishment needed to be answered.

Saturday, June 8, 2013     

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The Dark Side of Obama's Government
(10 comments) This article is about the Faustian bargain that, somewhere along the way, Obama has struck with the military-security complex.

Monday, April 22, 2013     

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The Terror Next Time
(1 comments) What if the Boston bombers were two Pakistani kids whose family had been wiped out by an Obama drone strike? Americans might finally get an idea of the horror they've been responsible for.

Monday, March 4, 2013     

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Zero Light Thirty (or Twenty, Whatever)
(1 comments) A very different take on the raid on Abbottabad, questioning the veracity of the event. The article starts with the observation that in seven months, the CIA neither saw nor heard OBL.

Monday, December 26, 2011     

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The Touchy-Feely Propaganda of 60 Minutes
(1 comments) A reflection on propaganda, American-style. I discuss President Obama's interview on 60 Minutes after the raid on Osama bin Laden's residence in Pakistan.

Saturday, December 24, 2011     

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The touchy-feely propaganda of 60 Minutes
(5 comments) This is a reflection on propaganda, American-style. I talk about the nature of propaganda, comparing how the North Korean anchorwoman tearfully read the death announcement on President Kim Jong Il, and the 60 Minutes interview with President Obama last May, after the raid on Osama bin Laden's house.

Saturday, September 24, 2011     

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It must be strange to be Israeli
(3 comments) This article points out that since the Palestinians will not leave their land, just what does Israel intend to do? There seems to be national denial on this question, and national denial is an odd but global poltical phenomenon. I compare it with the 30 years of deficits in America.

Thursday, September 8, 2011     

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NATIONAL PATRIOTIC SPLURGE WEEK
(1 comments) This is a follow-up article to my earlier one, "9-11 WAS A NATIONAL JOB." In it I recap that guilt for 9-11 extends not just to those who committed the deed but to those who help to cover it up and those who have no stomach for the truth. So there will be no new investigation beyond the books and article on the Internet.

Thursday, September 1, 2011     

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9-11 was a national job
(27 comments) This is a wider perspective on 9-11, starting with the widespead belief that the event was not brought about by Al Qaeda but Americans. The responsibility for the event, therefore, extends across the nation, not with a small coterie.