Moonlit night in Samoa

... here's a feel good post to mellow down the politically animated ones of late ....LOL!

A rising full moon is an image that is etched in every Samoan’s thoughts and memories of island life. More importantly is the moon’s association with love and romance, as in many stories and tales of the South Seas.

A po masina (moonlit night) is a night of fun and games in the village malae (square/courtyard). Children play igave’a (hide and seek), togiga nonu (tossing and finding the nonu/noni fruit, the main ingredient of a now popular medicinal drink) or gaga ‘ie (hiding and finding the lavalava wrap around). The young adult boys and girls would sit, chat and often romancing each other. The older ‘aumaga (untitled men) would huddle in a designated spot playing their guitars and ukuleles and singing their favorite and popular love songs.

This musical gathering can also be part of a common ritual among the men called the fa'asausauga. The practice involves the men sitting or walking about with their upper bodies bare and exposed to the sau (cool, soothing nightly breeze) mainly for relief and therapy. The word fa'asausau has therefore come to mean “without a shirt/top” for the men. During the day these men spend most of the time working in their plantations in the mountains or out fishing at sea. At night the fa'asauauga is the process by which their bodies are soothed, healed and rehabilitated by the sau. It’s a natural remedy.  Shirts, t-shirts or singlets are either absent or draped around their backs or shoulders. Most men prefer to observe the fa'asausauga ritual while playing guitars and singing at the malae.

The unamplified yet melodious strains of island harmonies are wafted through the village by the same panacean breeze and in turn become sweet lullabies to the village elders and invalids. The men sing of village life but they mostly sing of love and romance. They sing of the moon (while under the moon) and of how its slow rise over the swaying palm trees and silver lagoon is peak time for romance; time when thoughts and memories of a lover are conjured, felt and overwhelm. For these noble savages a full moon rising is time for rendezvous and trysts - or nostalgia as sentimentalized in this favorite/popular stanza and verse:

Le masina e, ua vaaia i luga o mauga  (As the moon rises over the mountains)
Le tumutumu oe o nai o’u mafaufauga  (That’s when my thoughts turn only to you)
Ua e malaga i nu’u ese  (Though you have traveled to far away lands)
Ae le galo oe la’u pele  (I will always remember you my dear)
Le alofa sa i o ta luga ua ou teuina  (And the love we shared, is one that I now treasure)

When the night's fun is all finished, then everyone leaves spontaneously, just as they came together. This habit is the origin of the popular expression  "O le a le tu'ua faa-evaga a tamaiti i le po masina/ O le a le tu'ua faapo evaga [le tatou mafutaga ae e tatau ona avatu sa matou faafetai]." (We will not depart from this gathering as children do after their moonlit night revelry [so we need to formally express our gratitude ....] ) The expression is often used as an introduction to a more formal speech thanking the hosts for the food, hospitality, kindness, etc., at a wedding, funeral or other social functions.

Faafetai lava mo le fa'asausauga!


Obama uses profanity on Romney

Obama stoops low to influence children
Yes, you read that right! Obama, in his interview with Rolling Stone calls Romney a "bullshitter". Perhaps even worse is the fact that he said it in the context of how children could easily tell that Romney was just that.

It’s certain that Obama is getting desperate, though I must say that name calling has been the aim and focus of his campaign from the beginning. He has been attacking Romney with vitriol, ad hominem, diatribe and now profanity. Early on while the GOP was still in the primaries picking their nominee, there was a leak from Obama’s people that the main focus of the president’s campaign if Romney were to win the GOP nomination was to "kill Romney". Obama’s campaign tried to double down and deny it but now we know that the leopard just cannot change its spots. Obama and his campaign have been calling Romney names such as traitor, murderer, liar, etc. in the last several months.

And now the President of the United States has called his Republican opponent a "bullshitter". Now it may be fine if that's Obama’s own vernacular and may/can be used privately, but to use it publicly, while speaking officially as the President of the United States, let alone in the Oval Office, to describe and malign someone who is a candidate for the same office, only shows how low, deplorable, disrespectful and rude Obama is. I must say that such language, resentment and venom are below the integrity of the office of the President of the United States, and I’m sure the good people of America - and others as well - agree, despite their political leanings. It's just sad. Very, very sad.

If Obama ends up losing, it’s because of the fact that he has been launching personal attacks on Romney instead of lauding and advancing his own accomplishments and record of the last four years. Oooops, wait a minute, he does not have a record to laud and advance - he failed as a president. Ok, now we know why he’s playing the man and not the polo! (ball).


The Third Debate

My take...late, but not never!

Well, it was the final debate of the 2012 presidential race. And of course the sequitur is, who won? Pundits and debate watchers, again, favored Obama. Once more, I agree, but for me the “win” was only based on the general tone, feel and intensity of the debate during which the president sounded even more aggressive and pertinacious. Unfortunately, he also demonstrated moments of weakness, petulance, sarcasm, arrogance and condescension. And in that regard, Obama got the short end of the stick. Romney was more presidential and in a more composed, in control, albeit in passive and subdued demeanor compared to the first debate. I also believe Romney’s approach last night was a strategy. Voters know that Romney already has the knowledge, experience and skills to be president (compared to Obama, then and ....now!) but they want to know if he has the disposition to be the commander-in-chief. Romney passed that test in last night’s debate, though it already started burgeoning in the first two.

Obama may have snatched himself an important win (or wins including the second debate) but I doubt the current trajectory of the race - in which the momentum is with Romney based on most polls - will change.
Another area in which Romney came out on top was in the fact checking phase of the debate. The two main ones where the most tension was felt were, first, the postwar forces in Iraq which Obama said he was against keeping any, and Romney claiming that both he and the president supported; and second, was the auto bailout in which Obama accused Romney of wanting to allow the industry to go bankrupt. Well, Romney was right in both claims and Obama was wrong according to the fact checkers. This is an example of an indifferent and ill-informed president, which also reflect on his weak and failed leadership.

Moreover, Obama’s rhetoric earned him points but he was still weak in the overall substance of the debate. Ironically, the foreign policy focus of the debate, should have been in his favor - well theoretically. But this is a president who has bragged and dwelled solely on the killing of Osama as his initiation, medal and core qualification for being president. Americans generally agree that anyone (actually, even I, or Josh, my neighbor’s twelve year old son), given the same authority, would have made the call, yet Obama still touts and flaunts it as if he deserves all the credit. In fact, he, in jest, mentioned it in his Al Smith dinner speech recently in which he said, directed at Romney who also attended, that killing Osama was a “debate alert”.

Perhaps one of the bigger ironies in this race, understood only by the more keen observers of Obama’s policies, is that Obama "borrowed" his ideas from Romney’s - at least for his (Obama’s) touted achievements as president.

First, Obama’s approach and solution in the auto bailout was exactly what Romney recommended in his 2008 op-ed in the NY Times where Romney said to let the auto companies go through managed bankruptcy then assisted by Federal guarantees. It's essentially what Obama did.  Second, Obamacare is fundamentally based on “Romneycare” - a similar health care program (state level) Romney implemented in Massachusetts when he was governor. In fact, some of the same people who drew up Romney’s health care plan were hired by Obama to help with Obamacare (aka Affordable Care Act).

What does that say about the President? Well, the same thing he confessed about, that as president he was still "in training" - still learning. That’s not surprising with someone who became president without any executive experience and, as GOP supporters have said, who never ran anything, not even a country store. And so Obama’s inexperience has clearly been demonstrated in his first term becoming an ineffective leader presiding over the worst economy since the Great Depression, accumulating more debt in four years than all other previous presidents combined!!

Lastly, Obama does not even have a plan for the next four years - actually, until several hours ago!!   His campaign has just released a 20-page plan (versus Romney’s 120-page plan that has been out for months).  It's a brochure, a pamphlet!  There are two more weeks left before the election and Obama has just released a 20-page brochure outlining his plan for the next four years? Come On!  That’s like handing in a term paper written two days before the due date - rough, rambling, unproofed and plagiarized (re: copying Romney's ideas above). And we all know what the grade is for such work - an F which coincidently is the letter for Failure and Forward both associated with Obama and his campaign.

Therefore, Romney may have "lost" the third battle (debate) but is still winning the war. And as Mrs. Romney said, if Romney wins, America wins; if he loses, America loses.

And that’s the truth!


What's the Deal?

Decision 2012

 In the news today:
MANCHESTER, N.H. – President Obama, returning to New Hampshire for the first time in well over a month, Thursday mocked Mitt Romney’s tax and spending proposals as a bogus plan with numbers that don’t add up.

“Listen, New Hampshire, you’ve heard of the New Deal, you’ve heard of the Square Deal, the Fair Deal – Mitt Romney is trying to sell you a sketchy deal,” Obama said.
One supporter in a crowd of a few thousand, perhaps thinking he had a better phrase, yelled out: “It’s a raw deal!” ~ Politico
To which I say:
President, I have also heard of the Bad Deal and the Failed Deal;  lemme tell ya, a sketchy deal would be much better than the BAD and FAILED DEAL of the past four years! ...or worse, the NO DEAL of the next four years (if you win) ... So, Deal?... Mr. President?

(Dang it, I need to be Romney’s speech writer ... LOL! ... C’mon GOP put this in one of your ads! :) ... or let Romney say it on the campaign trail......)

Speaking of deals, it's all going to come down to TWO DEALS (below) and Americans are going to make the choice between The American Dream vs. The American Cream (self explanatory, aye?) Oh, by the way only one of the two is the Real American Deal and Ideal - the other one is NOT!

                                     DEAL?                       OR                    NO DEAL?


The Second Debate

...and yes I just finished  watching - as some or many of you - the second debate between Obama and Romney. The two post-debate polls (CNN and CBS) gave it to the president. And I would agree. But wait. Obama won in style, as far as his oratory rhetoric and debate mannerisms - albeit feisty and aggressive at times. Substantively, Romney won. For you Obama-ites, go back and read the above polls especially CNN's on questions like who they (respondents) believe would handle the economy better - Romney wins by almost 20 points. Who would better handle the deficit - Romney wins. Who would better handle health care - Romney wins, and who would better handle jobs - Romney wins. So you ask, why did Obama come out on top in the polls - AGAIN, it's his traditional debate-like style, being more aggressive (which was expected due to his lackluster performance in the first debate) and sometimes seemed feisty which to most people, unfortunately, was un-presidential.

Obama was obviously angry on the Libya question. And although Romney did not capitalize on the exchange, and seemed to have been weaker - with the help of the moderator (thanks Crowley), - the truth is that Obama was cunning and conniving (and I'm sure this will be clarified in the next debate which will be on foreign policy exclusively). The Libya attack is going to get worse in the next few days and weeks, and will likely be Obama's Achilles' heel.

So here's the scenario. From the beginning, the Obama administration has consistently and blatantly claimed that the attack (which killed the Ambassador and other Americans) was a direct result of the now well known Youtube video, which also triggered the protests in Egypt.

The day after the attack, Obama gave a speech in the Rose Garden at the White House and mentioned "acts of terror" - not as the cause of the Libya attack, but in a general context of terrorist attacks on America, especially abroad. (That's what Romney failed to address effectively.) Why is that THE TRUTH? Well, a few days and even a week after the Libya attack, Susan Rice the US ambassador to the UN, said the attack was a result of the video. Even Obama when he addressed the UN days after the attack mentioned the Youtube video several times. And if that's not enough evidence of blatant lies, Obama appeared on "The View" and was specifically asked if it was a terror attack, and he said, they're not sure, it's still under investigation (the video of this exchange is available on Youtube). WOW! WOW! ...is all I can say.

And worse, even before the Obama administration FINALLY admitted that it was a terrorist attack, weeks after the attack, they had also concocted that it was a protest outside the embassy that attacked the embassy and was therefore SPONTANEOUS. The truth? There was NO PROTEST.

And so Obama and his pundits will stick to the words "act of terror", verbatim, in the Rose Garden as defense to Romney's charge.  The problem is the words were used in a different context, NOT as the chief cause of the attack.  Fact checkers are on Romney's side on this one.
Moreover, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton just a few days ago, in order to protect Obama OBVIOUSLY, stepped in and said she is solely responsible, not the president. Ironically, Obama said in the debate tonight that he is responsible. There's a lot more on this cover up by Obama and his administration, and will be revealed in the next few days and weeks leading up to the election. Stay tuned.

Obama therefore told Romney tonight with an angry and feisty direct glare, that he and his administration are offended by his (Romney's) claims of the inconsistencies in the Libya embassy attack. Romney decided not to respond. But if I were Romney, here's my suggested response to that "offensive" statement by Obama:
"Mr. President, if you are offended, I'd like to inform you that the people of America, the ones who put you in the White House, are MORE OFFENDED at the deception and fabrication that have characterized your administration's version of events before, during and after the attack on THEIR EMBASSY in Benghazi."
If you watched the debate closely, Obama had NO answers for his failed promises, pathetic and poor record as pointed out by Romney
  • more people (in the tens of millions) on foodstamps than when he took office
  • has incurred more debt ($5 trillion) in four years than Bush's eight years - in fact, and all other presidents combined
  • twenty three million people out of work
  • gas prices have gone up above 100% since he took office
  • the average income per family has dropped by about $4000
  • the economy growth was less this year than last year, and was less last year than the year before, etc., etc.,
  • prices on everything have gone up higher than any time before
  • health care costs are already rising and will be even higher when Obamacare is fully implemented
 Finally, I would say that Obama is big on oratory rhetoric, platitudes and words, and as cliched as this sounds, it is still true, effective and applicable in Obama's first term: "Actions SPEAK LOUDER than words."

Better still, this statement by Bobby Jindal (governor of Louisiana) after the debate sums up the debate eloquently and effectively, "You can combine the speaking skills of Presidents Reagan, Lincoln and Winston Churchill…and you still couldn't defend his record."

...good night!

Did Laura Ingraham read my blog? LOL!  Tonight (Oct 17th, and some 20 hours later) she was on O'Reilly and she was interviewed by Bill.  On the Benghazi issue during the debate, Laura said that Romney should have responded to Obama's "offensive" comment and should have told him that "the American people are offended." (I'll post a reference or video when I find it.)  Ok, click  here
And Candy Crowley, the CNN moderator, has now admitted that she was wroooong on Libya and Romney was right!  ...Duuuhh!


Some weekend pics

Football football and more football, but a few of the younger ones (Eden and the boys) drove themselves around the field and had fun doing it. ...

Game Night - several couples from our church/ward came over to play games at our place. Lots of food taro, oka (Hawaiian poke), alaisa faapopo (the nite’s special), koko samoa, curry, pies, cakes, etc. ... here, pics of the game room the morning after - calm after the storm    



My son

My Son
My only son,
my friend and typical teenager.
he loves video games,
consoles controllers and conventions.
he loves to sketch and draw
even on the walls of his room where
superheroes and movie characters live.
he loves to play basketball
so he has many pairs of shoes.
he loves to sing
so he sings in his room and when
he walks around the house.
best of all,
he loves to film and loves
to capture images.

briefly, he went prodigal
trying to find himself
but returned home
where he found it.

now he’s left home again
with only two pairs of shoes
this time losing himself
in finding others so they can live forever.
he sings the Lord’s praises and
tries to capture His image
in his countenance
because he loves his friend.
he loves Heavenly Father more
than anything and loves
most of all,
His only Begotten Son



Ia se’i vavae fo’i foe ...

... basically means “let’s change things up a bit; let’s add some variety to the mix.”

I know that this should be posted in the Motuga’afa page - and it will be later on - but for now, it’s posted here to su’ifefiloi-ing the posts. :)  E le matagofie se siva ae taga tasi. (A dance is neither exciting nor graceful if it lacks a variety of movements/actions.)

So here’s a couple of Samoan alagaupu (proverbial expressions) with derivations, meanings and usage.   E masani ona faaaogaina pe afai o loo e tautala i le gagana maotua, e ese mai i le gagana o aso uma (Often used in polite or oratical speeches as opposed to the vernacular.)

1. Ma’ona/ ma’oona a umu fu’e
(Getting full/satiated eating in the cooking hut.)

Faaaogaina i se faafetai, ae maise se faatasiga o fai ai ni taumafa/mea’ai.

I Samoa, e masani ona ui ane se tagata o fu’e se umu a se aiga, ona afe lea e fesoasoani i le fu’eina o le umu. A uma ona fu’e e masani ona ave i le tagata lea se talo ma se lu’au, poo se ‘ulu ma se taoipu poo a lava ni mea’ai sa tao i le umu e taui ai lana fesoasoani (ia poo le fia’ai faa’ata’ata fo’i). Ona ‘ai loa lea o le tagata lea i totonu o le tunoa (umu/umukuka) a uma, ua ma’ona, ona faaauau lea e aga’i i le mea na faamoemoe e alu iai. O lona uiga ua ma’ona i le umu lea faato’a uma ona fu’e, ia “sola” ai a lea iina. O le tulaga aloa’ia ma le faaaloalo, e alu i le fale se’i uma ona laulau le mea ‘ai a le aiga ona a’ai faatasi lea, fai ai ma sana faafetai, ae le o le ‘ai muamua ma ma’ona i le umu ona mou atu ai a lea.

O le faaaogaina la o le upu lea, e tusa o lea ua e fai i le aiga e leai matou te le amio e pei o le amio a le tagata e ‘ai i le umu lea faato’a fu’e, ua ma’ona loa ona sola lea, ae le faia se faafetai.

 "O le a le tu'ua faa evaga i le po masina le tatou afiafi, matou te le ma’ona/ma’oona fo’i a umu fu’e, leaga e faigata la outou faaaloalo, le ma’au ma lo tou masui..."  Ia ga.

2. Momoli fa’a i’a o tai o’oo’o
(as a fish washed on dry ground by high tide)

O le tai o’oo’o, po’o le tai sua tutu’i, o le tai lea ua sosopo ma o’o ona i’u galu ma ona tafega i le fuefue ia poo le auala tele fo’i. O le masani la i tai sua ma le o’oo’o ona tafefea ai i’a ma momoli i le pa’umatu ma pa’ulia ai ma i’u ina mamate pe afai e le vave ona lavea’iina.

E faaaogaina o se upu faalalolalo, ma se upu e tapui ai se va, e ‘alofia ai mai i le maasiasi poo le maoaluma

1. "O pa’ia i aiga (poo pa’ia o Samoa) o le a le o’o iai sa matou faamatalaga ne’i te’i ua iai se sasi ona avea lea o si nei toea’ina faa-i’a e momoli e tai o’oo’o; ia pe toe pa’ia fo’i lota mata i si ota lava lima."

2. "Ina ne’i avea ita pei o se i’a ua momoli e tai o’oo’o, o lea e mua’i ona faamalie atu pe afai fo’i e faa-manu oso vale i le fogatia se leo o le toea’ina."
(Gagana faigofie: Ina ne’i te’i ua ta maoaluma, o lea faamalie pe afai e tuvale se manatu poo se leo o lenei tagata.)
A le o lena fo'i pe o se taupulega to'atele ma se tonu o se mea e fai, ae i'u i se faaletonu, ae uma ifo ua amo uma pe tu'ua'iina uma i se tagata e to'atasi le faaletonu. Ona faapea loa lea o se tala a le tagata lea, "Se paga, ua pei ita o se i'a ua momoli e tai o'oo'o." "Ua momoli fo'i ita fa'a i'a o tai o'oo'o ... lea ua tu i le faaletonu." Ioe ua makua oki a le mea a kakou....LOL!

Ia o loa e fu'e le umu lale ua afulu ....Hahaa!


Media Comments on the Debate

...  a sample

Romney Kills It! ~ Politico
Oct 3, 2012 11:21 AM EDT
'The challenger turned in a strong performance, while the president disappointed.'

Obama’s Big Whimper
by Michael Medved
"The 51-year-old hope-and-change wonder boy looked worn out, uncomfortable, and embarrassed to be there, at times wrinkling his face as if suffering severe gastric distress."

‘He May Have Lost the Election’
by Andrew Sullivan
"This was supposed to be a debate, not a wonkish lecture. And Romney’s well-crafted punches are going to sting Obama for a while."

Why Obama Lost
by David Frum - CNN Analyst
"Mitt Romney dominated and Barack Obama stumbled in Denver Wednesday night."

The Rockefeller Republican Wins Big
by Michael Tomasky - Newsweek
"There is no question that Mitt Romney won this debate, and won it big. He was crisp, and he struck a good balance of being on the offensive without being offensive. Obama was hardly even there half the time. He seemed as if he just wandered in off the street."

Why Obama Fell Flat
by Howard Kurtz
"The president made some good arguments but was undermined by his lack of passion. Howard Kurtz on how he let Romney win the night."

Polls: Romney Wins
by Matthew DeLuca
"Pundits trashed President Obama’s performance in last night’s debate—and instant polls show that voters agree."

Was That Obama’s Dud Double?
by Tunku Varadarajan
"He wasn’t exactly sweaty-Nixonesque, but the Obama on display in Denver was more flaccid, dull-brained, and shifty than we’ve ever seen him in the White House. One thing is clear: Romney’s a debater—and he’s likable,... "

"Where was Obama tonight?!
Chris Matthews - MSNBC
He should watch, well not just Hardball, Rachel [Maddow], he should watch you, he should watch the Reverend Al [Sharpton], he should watch Lawrence [O'Donnell]. He would learn something about this debate,"

Obama did poorly in the debate
Ed Schultz - MSNBC
"I don't think he explained himself very well. I thought he was off his game. I was absolutely stunned tonight,"

NOTE: When Michael Tomasky, Chris Matthews, Ed Schultz, etc. do not say anything positive about Obama in the debate with Romney, then you know that Obama's performance was beyond spinning and beyond sugarcoating.  In other words, it was bad, as in bad - not baaad!  LOL!


Debate or "De Bait"?

... maybe not for long
 I should really look forward to this debate tonight between Obama and Romney, but for some reason I am not. Why? Because I know Obama will win, no matter how well Romney does. How do I know that? Because the MSM (Mainstream Media) - or what I call the MaliciouS Media - will spin the debate in Obama’s favor. So "de bait" is already dangled before Romney by the MaliciouSMedia. And if Romney messes up or sounds/looks weak, then you will read the morning headlines - by the likes of Huffington Post, MSNBC, Politico, Daily Beast, Daily Kos, Mother Jones, etc.- that the election is over. These MSM outlets will hire you on the spot if you answer "Yes!" to their only question of their interviews "Do you hate Romney?" And then you will join the ranks of  Martin Bashir, Rachel Maddow, Chris Matthews, Michael Tomasky, Paul Begala, Hillary Rosen and all the Romney haters.

Meanwhile I’ll just watch and wait to write my own post debate analysis, if not live updates ...

Well, quite the contrary it now seems and I am starting to feel sorry for the President. The big difference in knowledge between him and Romney is startling. Rightfully! Romney has MBA and Law degrees - plus extensive executive experience. Obama has only a Law degree and a total lack of executive experience - only as a community organizer and first term senator - that's it! Compare that to Romney being a former Governor, CEO (Bain Corporation) and President/CEO (Olympics), Church leader, etc.

Romney was right a couple of weeks ago that Obama is going to lie during the debates - and he (Obama) has lied flagrantly so far - e.g. Tax deduction for a company moving overseas.  Romney told him there's no such thing.

VERDICT IS IN: Romney IS clearly THE WINNER. So far that's my take and CNN's as well - a more neutral news channel. Obama seemed flustered, listless and lost!  He actually was groping for answers.

Surprisingly MSNBC seems to hands the win to Romney too! (Hence I stand corrected!..LOL! )
"Mitt Romney [as the winner] was the general consensus of the media, including the usually pro-Obama MSNBC. (MSNBC hosts Chris Matthews and Ed Schultz slammed Obama's performance.)" ~ Politico
Some final thoughts:
Well I guess when you’re hot you’re hot - Romney
And when you’re not you’re not - Obama

And Obama must have really sucked because even his own MSM gang agrees! I have watched Obama in some of his campaign speeches, especially when he’s rebutting a claim by Romney. He responds like a member of a college freshman debate team - he’s sarcastic, facetious and elementary in his logic. And he’s the President? C’mon.   Romney was definitely more confident, composed and smarter; Obama was livid and lethargic.

Watch Obama come back more aggressive and fiercer in the next debate but he has to be careful not to appear feisty and arrogant. And don’t forget that Romney has seen all that during the primaries.

Finally, Romney should insert the following somewhere in the remaining debates: "Look, I understand that the President is a good man, and a very popular and likeable person, but popularity and likeability do not create jobs and do not improve the economy; experience and leadersip do, and I have both - and more!"

UPDATE (10/15/2012) - day before the second debate:
A news headline reads:  "Obama camp predicts feistier showing in debate No. 2."