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  • A nice story for this Memorial Day weekend.


    https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/26/us/ko...rnd/index.html
    #MAGA -
    Morons Are Governing America

    Comment


    • Originally posted by Jeff Buchanan View Post

      Policy matters. We've pretty much all decided character is what it is (who said that here or something like it?)

      And yes, I certainly have considered Trump not getting reelected. That's going to be up to the voters and I'm good with that. I also think if the D's move to impeach, Trump will get re-elected save some black swan event that arises out of the impeachment process that is a death blow to him ...... something like the smoking gun that got Nixon.
      If character doesn't matter when the President is someone you largely agree with (Trump), then character never matters.

      Comment


      • DSL, I think we can get too preoccupied with the residents of the WH rather than the policy their administrations embrace. There is a danger in making too much of the virtue of presidents and the character we may wish them to possess at the expense of valuing a president's policies.
        On Harbaugh's expectations for M football in 2015 (NFL NETWORK): �We'd rather be about it than talk about it."

        Comment


        • You're equating end goals with policies. We all agree (even Drumpf) that Iran should not have nukes and have its influence curbed, Korea should not have nukes, China should abide by recognized trade equities, and terrorists eliminated. Those are goals. Trump's policies of naked hostility and cold war vs Iran, its economic punishment of North Korean people with no effect on the NK gov't, the brutalization of American businesses that trade with China, and basically do nothing on the terrorism front all run counter to the stated goals. Yes policy matters. Policy, however, should lead to the stated goal, not undermine it. Do not fall into the trap where just because you believe in the stated goal, the random policy implemented will achieve that goal. In the case of the US, we are implementing policies that are counterproductive to achieving our stated goals. Praying to God that our unhinged President will eventually stumble upon a policy that facilitates US goals while currently maintaining policies that advantage our adversaries is not much of a foreign policy, imo.
          #MAGA -
          Morons Are Governing America

          Comment


          • We're hair splitting her, Jon ........

            Policies are a mechanism for controlling the behavior of an organisation by governing the behavior of people who work within that organisation. Policies exist to ensure, in a given situation, that people will behave in a way that is predictable in achieving some goal or objective.........

            In our discussion, the objective or goal of the Trump administration's policy is to obtain the things you list.

            I feel empathy for the peoples of NK and Iran but it is their governments, not ours responsible for the suffering they are experiencing. Denuclearize as the world is requiring these two governments to do and the people deciding on whether or not that end point will be obtained can relieve the suffering of the people they govern.

            I've said this before: I don't always agree with the means by which this administration attempts to reach its objectives or goals, e.g., immigration: the wall to the extent Trump has argued for it is stupid and unnecessary. The separation of children who entered the US illegally with a parent was problematic from the get-go. I could go on listing mis-steps of the Trump admiration in it's attempt to secure the Southern boarder - a reasonable goal - and the benefits that obtain by securing it.

            I think Trump has made mis-steps in dealing with China yet the goal and the means - tariffs - of obtaining their compliance in trade matters as the WTO has tried to unsuccessfully cajole them into doing for over a decade is entirely valid. Not everyone agrees that a trade war with China involving tit-for-tat tariffs is the best course of action to achieve the desired goal. The jury is still out on that one but I believe the Trump administration was correct in walking away from a deal that afforded the Chinese wiggle room in how they were going to implement the apparent agreements that were reached last month.

            I fully support every action the Trump administration has taken with Iran including aligning with SA against them. Every one of them. The failure of the world to confront the threat of Iranian strategic objectives in the ME and beyond is no less dangerous than that of an earlier world that failed to confront Adolf Hitler's Germany. To me, this isn't about oil or about filling the pockets of those in the defense or oil industries. It's about confronting governments that openly sponsor terrorism and seek nuclear weapons to achieve political and strategic objectives antithetical to those of the West.

            Previous administration's attempts to achieve the foregoing goals have largely failed. The reasons for those failures by-in-large can be blamed on the politics of the left who see the world through the lens of a cooperative, interconnected village instead of the highly competitive place it actually is.
            On Harbaugh's expectations for M football in 2015 (NFL NETWORK): �We'd rather be about it than talk about it."

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Jeff Buchanan View Post

              Previous administration's attempts to achieve the foregoing goals have largely failed. The reasons for those failures by-in-large can be blamed on the politics of the left who see the world through the lens of a cooperative, interconnected village instead of the highly competitive place it actually is.
              This is going off on a tangent and it's random thoughts but it's interesting that you say this. I'd have to argue it's really the centrists (both conservative centrists like Merkel or liberal ones like Obama) who have the rosier view of the world. The Far Right and the Far Left BOTH have essentially the same dim view of human nature. Man is essentially evil, essentially corrupt, and cannot be reformed or changed.

              On the far right this expresses itself in one form of tribalism or another. Nationalism, religious bigotry, ethnic hatred, etc. It's us or them. Everything is a zero sum game. To compromise is to show weakness.

              Likewise, the Far Left believes in the Maoist form of Endless Revolution. Corruption, decay, reactionary elements...they eventually all creep back in. The Revolution is never truly over.

              Both sides promise endless wars and struggle, not because they want it (or so they claim), but because it is inevitable.

              Comment


              • We might not be in this position of bad policies chasing noble goals if the "guard rails" of the Trump administration were still in place. Foreign policy dictated by knee jerk reaction lacking any forethought puts us in the position we find ourselves.

                Heh. Don't pin all the failures on the left, the right is equally at fault. The left espouses mindless optimism and the right self centered cynicism. Trying to find middle ground seems to leave us with mindless cynicism or self centered optimism. Perhaps, as a change of pace, we should try common sense.

                Happy Memorial Day everyone.
                #MAGA -
                Morons Are Governing America

                Comment


                • Will someone please 'splain to Extremely Stable Genius who is paying the tariffs?


                  Speaking in Tokyo Monday, Trump said of China, “they would like to make a deal. We’re not ready to make a deal.” He added, “We’re taking in tens of millions of dollars of tariffs and that number could go up very, very substantially, very easily.”

                  Still, Trump predicted a “very good deal with China sometime into the future because I don’t believe that China can continue to pay these really hundreds of billions of dollars in tariffs.”


                  (from the AP wire)
                  #MAGA -
                  Morons Are Governing America

                  Comment


                  • For those interested, the link is to a weighty document from the Congressional Research Service on Iran's Nuclear Program: Status, that was distributed on May, 10th of this year.

                    Some takeaways:

                    The IEIA has reported that Iran is essentially in compliance with July 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) that we've been calling the Iran Nuclear deal here.

                    On the US side, there have been questions regarding the IEIA's capacity to fully inspect Iran's nuclear program given the components of the JCPOA that allow Iran to restrict access to certain military sites. IOW, Iran can cheat and there is some evidence suggesting they do that.

                    The Trump administration's withdrawal from participation in the JCPOA in May of last year was based on three policy initiatives:
                    • One, to renegotiate the JCPOA to assure IEIA inspections that will improve verification - an element of the JCPOA that the Trump administration considers weak.
                    • Two, to stop the Iranian government from arming and supporting proxy entities so as to achieve it's strategic objectives by making specific demands of the Iranian government a part of the JCPOA.
                    • Three: withdrawing from the JCPAO (along with the various trade agreements and questioning NATO alliances) and imposing sanctions on Iran is part of a far reaching restructuring of global alliances more fitting of an emerging global order.*

                    Further thoughts: Terrorism is a major threat to any global order that might arise and therefore, seeking to disable Iran's capability to put a nuclear device in the hands of terrorist entities or otherwise support their capacity for disruption due to asymmetric means is part of this strategic restructuring.

                    In my support of the Trump administration's policies I've found it easier to grasp their validity when they are viewed in a wider, global perspective. There's a lot of controversy about the correctness of Trump's world view and that view as it is articulated by key players in his administration. I'm not claiming Trump's world view is correct only that his actions, esp. on the international stage, when viewed in that context, make more sense than trying to support or criticize them in a more narrowly defined context.


                    *That new global order is one that steps away from the Liberal World Order of post WWII that has prevailed since 1945. It recognizes a global economy as a major player where the diffusion of ideas may well become the most consequential dimension of globalization in the future. Such a new order, then, will rise or fall along with peace and prosperity by a mix of cooperation and competition between major spheres of influence that are no longer centered around the nations of the old Liberal World Order - the US, GB, the EU and Russia.

                    https://fas.org/sgp/crs/nuke/RL34544.pdf
                    Last edited by Jeff Buchanan; May 27th, 2019, 04:55 PM.
                    On Harbaugh's expectations for M football in 2015 (NFL NETWORK): �We'd rather be about it than talk about it."

                    Comment


                    • I surprised that 79 page document doesn't touch on the potential 'wild card' scenario where outside forces (read US) causes the destabilization of Iran. Iran, through the Revolutionary Guard, distributes reactor fuel to groups like Hezbollah and PLO military wings for the construction of dirty bombs. These could be fed to the Palestinians who could simply wait for the wind to blow in the right direction and then send plumes of radioactivity billowing into Israel. Through the internet or even cell service, ballistic missile design technology could be sent gratis to NoKo just to eff with the US. Unlike enriched plutonium / uranium, the low grade material Iran possesses can be easily shielded from detection with lead plates. It would take the very expensive equipment (like what is in place at the Windsor/Detroit border) to pick it up. At that point it might be too late. A tanker trailer filled with explosives and reactor fuel, driven by a suicide driver, would not be pleasant to deal with. If the gov't of Iran perceives mortal danger, its going to go way beyond the simple scuttling of ships in the Straits.

                      The document also insinuates that the West has had a highly placed spy in the Iranian nuke program since 2007 and up to at least 2012. Perhaps a sudden blindness became part of the catalyst of Trump's sudden flailing.
                      Last edited by Ghengis Jon; May 27th, 2019, 05:35 PM.
                      #MAGA -
                      Morons Are Governing America

                      Comment


                      • Yes ........ I just watched all 8 episodes of the 2018 release of Amazon's Jack Ryan. In it, terrorists get hold of radioisotopes of Cesium - highly radioactive dust like material that can "billow" as you suggest in the form of a dirty bomb and produces fatal radiation sickness within minutes of being inhaled.

                        The target of the terrorist's plot was the US President, quarantined in a Bethesda hospital after these terrorists tricked a JSOC team into rescuing hostages. The terrorists had contaminated the rescued hostages with Ebola and the president and others got exposed when they were welcoming them back at the WH. Clever, diabolical actually. The Cesium was to be released into the hospital's ventilation system killing the President, VP and senior members of Congress within minutes along with hundreds of hospital staff (including Jack's girl friend - sub plot). Ryan, of course saved the day by killing the head terrorist before he had a chance to activate the dispensing device with his cell phone.

                        ........ I'll take keeping shit like that out of the hands of the Iranians altogether by severely limiting their nuclear program but your scenario isn't completely weird either.
                        On Harbaugh's expectations for M football in 2015 (NFL NETWORK): �We'd rather be about it than talk about it."

                        Comment


                        • Sounds like a group of tornadoes went through the Dayton area overnight. Another went through about 50 miles northwest, in the town of Celina near the Indiana border. Haven't seen a lot of pictures yet but things look pretty bad. I-75 shut down in Dayton because of all the debris.

                          Comment


                          • Hammering Hank hits this one on the head:
                            https://www.usatoday.com/story/sport...WAyDam7EB2e5jE

                            Comment


                            • Remember how the Texas Secretary of State started off the year by claiming that they'd found around 100,000 non-citizens were registered to vote in Texas? It was a huge story in right-wing media. Trump even tweeted about it being the 'tip of the iceberg'. Here it was, finally, the hard evidence proving millions upon millions of illegals are voting for the Dims in the elections!! The State of Texas sent out lists of names to all the counties who they said needed to be checked then purged from the voting lists.

                              That's when things went south.

                              I missed this at the time, but the state called an end to the 'review' in April, acknowledging that the list was a debacle.

                              https://www.texastribune.org/2019/04...tary-of-state/

                              That same Secretary of State resigned today after failing to secure enough votes to make him a permanent Secretary.

                              https://www.npr.org/2019/05/28/72752...-purge-resigns
                              Last edited by Dr. Strangelove; May 28th, 2019, 06:52 PM.

                              Comment


                              • Mitch McConnell throws his hat into the ring for Hypocrite of the Year.



                                https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/28/polit...020/index.html
                                #MAGA -
                                Morons Are Governing America

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