“I Was Robbed!”

I have been following politics for about 50 years (yes I am an old fart) and I cannot remember a time when politics was more fucked up than in this election year.

Our major candidates are a woman that is about as big a war hawk as Mussolini….and scam artist that hides behind a business empire that no one can identify.

As the day of vote draws near this time around the stupidity and total bullshit is choking the process with platitudes, insults and finger pointing…..imagine a 6th grade argument in the playground….and you have an idea of just how far this thing has slid down the rabbit hole.

We have just had our first presidential debate, if you could possibly call it that, and it was a total waste of time and energy for anyone that watched it…..(I have watched on video…that way I could pause and go puke from time to time)….but the fun part is listening to the spin the candidate has come up with sine that night….first it was a faulty mic that he was given and now that has changed to lambasting the moderator……

Donald Trump appears to have changed his tune about Monday night’s debate: He’s still saying that he won, but he’s now also saying that Lester Holt’s moderating was biased against him, the Hill reports. “I had to put up with the anchor and fight the anchor on everything I said. What a rigged deal,” Trump, who initially said Holt did a “great job,” told a campaign rally in New Hampshire Thursday. “What’s going on in this country is so sad.

I mean come on….this ass is a sore loser…..and he will blame everything possible and the sad part is that the mentally challenged that support him will buy into the spin….even if they watched the whole disaster from start to finish…..

And it is not over yet….we still have 2 more presidential debates and a single VP debate, which may prove to be more professional than the first one……but what can we expect in the next presidential one?

  • Politico reports that Trump’s campaign has ignored the advice of senior Republicans and is now targeting Bill Clinton’s infidelity, including the issue on a list of talking points sent to surrogates. Sources say the campaign is in turmoil after a disappointing debate performances and aides are looking at ways to change the conversation, including a possible last-minute trip to Israel.
  • Trump himself brought up Bill Clinton’s impeachment at a campaign rally in New Hampshire Thursday, the AP reports, but analysts say the Bill strategy could backfire, especially with women voters. “The whole notion of trying to get Hillary Clinton to pay for Bill Clinton’s infidelities is just strategically a bad choice,” says GOP strategist Katie Packer.

Will the Mad Hatter jump down the rabbit hole or will he finally start acting like an adult?

All I can do is smile……and wait for the attacks…….

I’m going for pancakes……

Please Vote But Not For Him

The 2016 election is close and as usual the dialog has digressed into immature babble…..issues no longer matter only gossip and insults…..one side has digressed into 4th grade tit for tat playground bickering….it is all too fucking silly for words.

Then there is the “picking on pitiful me” thing…..I mean these people are the same people that have been “picking on” Clintons for a decade (not that they do not deserve the scrutiny)……neither camp can actually talk about issues or solutions…just political platitudes for the idiots…..

Not a big fan of USA Today but they have done something that no other newspaper has done……given a non-endorsement……

USA Today has never taken sides in a presidential election before—but Donald Trump has never run for president before. In a blistering editorial, which can be seen in full here, the paper’s editorial board says it has decided to break with 34 years of tradition because Trump is simply “unfit for the presidency.” “He has demonstrated repeatedly that he lacks the temperament, knowledge, steadiness, and honesty that America needs from its presidents,” the board writes, urging readers to “resist the siren song of a dangerous demagogue” and vote for anybody but Trump.

The editorial board says that while it was united against Trump, it was not united in favor of Clinton because while some believe she would serve ably as president, others had reservations about issues including her “lack of candor” and her “extreme carelessness in handling classified information.” “Our bottom-line advice for voters is this: Stay true to your convictions,” which could mean a vote for Clinton, a third-party candidate, or a “focus on down-ballot candidates who will serve the nation honestly,” they write. (The Arizona Republicfaced a backlash after endorsing a Democrat for the first time in 126 years.)

Reasons for there op-ed is as follows…….

He is erratic. Trump has been on so many sides of so many issues that attempting to assess his policy positions is like shooting at a moving target. A list prepared by NBC details 124 shifts by Trump on 20 major issues since shortly before he entered the race. He simply spouts slogans and outcomes (he’d replace Obamacare with “something terrific”) without any credible explanations of how he’d achieve them.

He is ill-equipped to be commander in chief. Trump’s foreign policy pronouncements typically range from uninformed to incoherent. It’s not just Democrats who say this. Scores of Republican national security leaders have signed an extraordinary open letter calling Trump’s foreign policy vision “wildly inconsistent and unmoored in principle.” In a Wall Street Journal column this month, Robert Gates, the highly respected former Defense secretary who served presidents of both parties over a half-century, described Trump as “beyond repair.”

(Read on)

Source: USA TODAY’s Editorial Board: Trump is ‘unfit for the presidency’

This editorial ought to get the micro-brain supporters up in arms…..(good times)

But to be honest I would say…please vote but not for the 2 biggies…….a better world is possible…but not with them.

The Original Power Grab

The closer the election day we get the more total garbage is being said by the candidates….I chose to ignore the mindless dribble coming from all those opinionated twats in the media and look for something that is at least interesting and informative…..

These days we hear about the power grab that Trump has made over the GOP…..but this is not the only such grab.

In my early days of college I was working on a degree in political history….especially the early days say 1765-1800…..those were fascinating days…..the delegates worked to come up with a government for the colonies….

There is a new book coming out about those early days…..”The Founding Father’s Power Grab”…..it is written about the Constitution and its meaning and ratification…..

Throughout the hot Philadelphia summer of 1787, delegates to the Constitutional Convention labored to replace the Articles of Confederation with a new frame of government. While the convention nearly broke down several times over slavery and the apportionment of representation among the states, by late September the delegates had achieved their goal and produced a new constitution—the one Americans still live with. No delegate was completely satisfied with the process or the results; of the 55 who attended the convention only 39 signed the finished document. Overall, though, the signers were pleased with the system they created. James Wilson of Pennsylvania judged it, “The best form of government which has ever been offered to the world.” Next, the Constitution was sent to the states to be debated and, the Framers hoped, ratified.

Few people in the state ratifying conventions shared Wilson’s enthusiasm. The proposed government was less democratic than either the Articles of Confederation or the individual state constitutions.

Source: The Founding Fathers’ Power Grab | New Republic

I have written in the past that those early days were anything but idyllic….there was much dissent and argument……there was not a consensus.

Greed Knows No Religion

Back in the days after 9/11 there was a ransom offered for the location of Osama….it stood for a decade……..no one would step up to claim the multi-million dollar reward.

I thought hen that these people that knew of his whereabouts were more dedicated to the movement than to the pursuit of cash…..almost admirable…..

But in the end….greed will always win the day…..a true American way……

A friend in Iraq sent me a mews story that I need to pass onto my readers…..

Kirkuk – Iraqi media outlets announced on Monday, that eight people working in the so-called Diwan al-Zakat (Zakat Bureau) of the Islamic State in Hawija district, southwest of Kirkuk, disappeared with 600 million dinars in mysterious circumstances.

According to alsumaria.tv, “Eight workers in ISIS Diwan al-Zakat in Hawija, including the currency exchange official, disappeared in mysterious circumstances yesterday.”

“600 million dinars also disappeared from the fund of Diwan al-Zakat with the workers,” Sumaria explained. “The ISIS militants waged raids on the homes of the workers but failed to find them, which raised suspicions that the disappeared persons fled with the money out of Hawija,” Sumaria added.

Noteworthy, the areas southwest of Kirkuk have been under the control of ISIS since June 2014, including the areas of Hawija, Zab, Riyad, al-Abbasi and al-Rashad.

File photo.

I guess greed will win out every time…..

An Obsolescent Military

Since Vietnam the US has depended on air power to turn the tide of the war/conflict….today we not only have highly qualified pilots but also depend on drones to do some of the heavy lifting…..

But after multi-million ordinances deployed and thousands on thousands of sorties….what have we gained?

But first let’s look at the word “obsolescent”…….meaning basically…no longer useful……

What, precisely, is the US military for, and what, precisely, can it do? In practical terms, how powerful is it? On paper, it is formidable, huge, with carrier battle groups, advanced technology, remarkable submarines, satellites, and so on. What does this translate to?

Military power does not exist independently, but only in relation to specific circumstances. Comparing technical specifications of the T-14 to those of the M1A2, or Su-34 to F-15, or numbers of this to numbers of that, is an interesting intellectual exercise. It means little without reference to specific circumstances.

For example, America is vastly superior militarily to North Korea in every category of arms–but the North has nuclear bombs. It can’t deliver them to the US, but probably can to Seoul. Even without nuclear weapons, it has a large army and large numbers of artillery tubes within range of Seoul. It has an unpredictable government. As Gordon Liddy said, if your responses to provocation are wildly out of proportion to those provocations, and unpredictable, nobody will provoke you.

Source: An Obsolescent Military – The Unz Review

Unz Review has a decidedly Libertarian point of view…..when reading that take it into consideration before going off on some worthless tangent.

IST Hits A Home Run

From time to time it feels good when a blog gets the jump on the government….In Saner Thought has had one of those times…..and all of us bloggers like to think that we have a better feel about events than the government or the media…..

Back in August of 2016 I recently wrote an op-ed for Ace News Room about the possible aftermath of the destruction of ISIS and/or AQ…..

Source: A Terrorist Diaspora | Ace News Room

I bring this up because of something that the FBI chief said at a recent (yesterday) Congressional hearing……..

The number of Americans traveling to Syria to fight alongside the Islamic State group has slowed to a trickle in the last year, but as the so-called caliphate is “crushed,” many militants from Western nations who are already there will stream out of the region and create new security threats.

“There will be a terrorist diaspora sometime in the next two to five years like we’ve never seen before,” Comey said.

Source: Senators press FBI director on response to terrorism threat

Really?  I wish I had said that……(sarcasm intended)…..I would like to think that IST was instrumental in this epiphany….but in reality he most likely reads the same reports that I do……just I am quicker on the draw than he.

May I suggest that they pay attention to the smaller blogs….some of us do have good instincts…..

Staying alert is the first rule of survival…….

Atta boy, Chuq

It’s Miller time!

Congressional Cowards Strike Again

While we were all laughing or crying, depending on your ideology, about the first presidential debate…..and debating who won that “fart fest”…… the Congress did something spectacular…….they passed a budget!

That is right….this dysfunctional pack of do nothing cowards did one of their most important task……to see that the government is funded and functioning….

Acutely partisan and all but dysfunctional, Congress has completed its most elementary task after an intense weekslong struggle, finalizing a deal to fund the government just days ahead of a shutdown deadline, the AP reports. The legislation extends existing spending levels a mere 10 weeks, past Election Day, while finally addressing the Zika crisis with $1.1 billion and providing long-sought help for the residents of Flint, Mich., as well as flood victims in Louisiana. After a last-minute burst of deal-making, the legislation passed the Senate on a 72-26 vote Wednesday and was backed by the House 342-85 in a late-night vote.

Republicans, defending a fragile Senate majority and eager to get a handful of vulnerable incumbents back home to campaign for re-election, accused Harry Reid of holding up a deal to keep GOP lawmakers off the campaign trail. Democrats lobbed their own allegations, all but accusing Republicans of racism for holding up money for people affected by lead-tainted water in Flint. The situation produced frustration all around as lawmakers of both parties lamented their inability to get their basic work done, even if each party insisted the other was to blame. Yet even as they stumbled to a messy solution, some lawmakers were already looking ahead to next year, when much weightier tasks await the next Congress and a new president in what may be an even more fraught era of divided government.

Oh Yeah….they also gave Obama his first veto override when Congress voted down his veto of the 9/11 Bill…..

Johnson Flubs Again

First a head;s up…..I will defend Johnson in this post but it by NO means that I endorse of support the Libertarian cause….

Most of us political junkies know of Johnson’s “Aleppo moment” and he had yet another “moment on MSNBC……

Gary Johnson had what he called another “Aleppo moment” Wednesday night when he was flummoxed by the question, “Who’s your favorite foreign leader?” The Libertarian presidential candidate, speaking at a televised town hall event at the University of New Hampshire, didn’t have a ready answer but got more time to think when running mate Bill Weld said his was Shimon Peres, only to be told by MNSBC host Chris Matthews that it had to be somebody living, ABC News reports. “You got to do this. Anywhere. Any continent,” Matthews told Johnson. “Canada, Mexico, Europe, over there. Asia. South America. Africa. Name a foreign leader that you respect.”

“I guess I’m having an Aleppo moment … the former president of Mexico,” said Johnson who wondered, “What is Aleppo?”—or possibly “What is a Leppo?”—when asked about the Syrian city earlier this month. CBS reports that when Matthews asked which former president of Mexico he was talking about, Johnson said he had a “brain freeze” and Weld eventually helped out, saying “Fox,” for Vicente Fox. “Fox! Thank you,” said Johnson. “He was a terrific leader.” After getting Johnson off the hook, Weld went on to name German Chancellor Angela Merkel as the living leader he most admires. (Johnson says the Libertarian ticket is the only one “that offers Americans a chance to find common ground.”)

To be honest if I had been asked that question out of the blue…I would have had a hard time naming a world leader that I respect…..first it would have caught me off guard and second I still cannot think of one that I actually respect even now.

The Economic Impacts of Removing Unauthorized Immigrant Workers

Every election has its diatribes about all those sneaky immigrants and as usual this one is no exception……..but this time the debate seems to be more “nasty” for lack of a better word.

The promise of one of our 2016 elections has promised to “rid” the country of all those “illegals” and the off-spring……a great applause line and possible vote generator….but is it realistic?

Is that a wise promise to try and keep?  Economically, that is?

The United States as a whole, as well as each state, stands to suffer widespread economic losses under a policy that removes unauthorized immigrants.

In every state and in every industry across the United States, immigrants—authorized and unauthorized—are contributing to the U.S. economy. Immigrant labor and entrepreneurship are believed to be powerful forces of economic revitalization for communities struggling with population decline. Estimates suggest that the total number of unauthorized immigrants currently residing in the United States is approximately 11.3 million, or about 3.5 percent of the total 2015 resident population of 324.4 million. Of those 11.3 million, we estimate that 7 million are workers. What is the economic contribution of these unauthorized workers? What would the nation stand to lose in terms of production and income if these workers were removed and returned to their home countries?

The main findings of this report are as follows:

Source: The Economic Impacts of Removing Unauthorized Immigrant Workers | Center for American Progress

If this study is accurate……just how will this loss be offset?

Or is that a plan that is secret until after the election?

Duterte Seeks Alliances with Russia, China

While you were watching the “Frick and Frack Show” and the battling babble….the world got a little more interesting…..

For decades the Us has had a military deployment in the Philippines……mostly Air Force and Navy….and recently the new president of the country, Mr. Personality, Duterte, has told the US to take a hike…..and is looking for new “friends”……

PRESIDENT Duterte said on Tuesday he would build by next year “new alliances” with China and Russia to cushion the fallout from the possible withdrawal of the United States from the Philippines.

In a speech in Pampanga province, Mr. Duterte said Filipinos would have to make a small sacrifice for what he had previously declared “crossing the Rubicon” in his ties with the United States while pursuing partnerships with its rival countries or what he called countries on the “other side of the ideological barrier.”

Source: Philippines President Duterte Seeks Alliances with Russia, China | World Affairs Journal

This is significant because of the situation in the South China Sea, where China is making its military presence known…..

This situation could become a lot uglier in the very near future…..