Closing Thought–07Feb18

Is there Really A Doomsday Weapon?

How many movies have you seen about some fantastic weapon….in essence a “Doomsday Weapon”?

Right.  But do they exist?

Some say Russia has one….Status-6

“The detonation of Status-6 in any [large US port city] would essentially wipe out their population into the far suburbs,” says a senior analyst with the National Institute for Public Policy. Status-6—a mysterious Russian nuclear weapon described in the Nuclear Posture Review released Friday by the Trump administration—is what NPR calls “a doomsday machine. Or at least a doomsday-ish machine.” The report describes Status-6 as “a new intercontinental, nuclear-armed, nuclear-powered, undersea autonomous torpedo.” The underwater drone could travel for years underwater and carry a nuclear payload larger than any current US or Russian weapon. While Russian state TV leaked an image of Status-6 in 2015, Friday’s report is the first time the US has publicly acknowledged it, according to CNN.

Russia would likely use Status-6 as a “third-strike” weapon if it’s attacked by the US and unable to use its other nuclear missiles. However, it’s also possible Status-6 doesn’t exist. Edward Geist of the Rand Corp. says Russia may have simply enlarged a drawing of a normal torpedo “to get our attention.” The Trump administration could have included it in the report to drum up support for its plan to strengthen the US nuclear arsenal. “There is no indication from public information that Russia is actively developing the system, but it is alarming to see it in a Pentagon document,” says Adam Mount at the Federation of American Scientists. Elsewhere in the report, the US discusses plans to make new, smaller atomic bombs as a deterrent against Russia. The Russian foreign minister calls the plan “confrontational” and “anti-Russian,” the BBC reports.

Speaking of nukes….this is an interesting look at US policy……

MY posting day is done….TTFN….chuq

The History That Made Russia

Read and learn!  Professor’s classroom is now in session.

Russia has been an enigma few generations… cannot understand what makes Russia tick without understanding geography and history.  Once the reader can do that then Russia’s many international moves make sense.  Like why Eastern Europe came under that influence of the USSR after World War Two.

But war defined and made Russia the country it is today.

Mother Russia. The largest country in world, by area, is filled with allure, amazing biodiversity, rich history, and beautiful vodka-drinking women. It is also home to about 145 million people that comprise over 150 different ethnic groups, and at least 50 newspapers publish their voice in a language other than Russian. From 1283 to the present-day, Russia has slowly, steadily expanded its initial territory centered at Moscow east, west, north, and south. In 1835, Alexis de Tocqueville saw in Russia an alternative to the American democratic model that he observed firsthand in the conclusion of Volume 1 of his magnificent, two-volume book Democracy in America. Tocqueville observed of the Russians and the Americans:

“The American struggles against the natural obstacles which oppose him; the adversaries of the Russian are men; the former combats the wilderness and savage life; the latter, civilization with all its weapons and its arts: the conquests of the one are therefore gained by the ploughshare; those of the other by the sword. The Anglo-American relies upon personal interest to accomplish his ends, and gives free scope to the unguided exertions and common-sense of the citizens; the Russian centres all the authority of society in a single arm: the principal instrument of the former is freedom; of the latter servitude.”

Russia was forged in the fires of war and it has not forgotten that… also helps explain most actions that the country attempts.

Reaganomics To The Rescue

Since the 1980’s Reaganomics has been the saving grace of the GOP…..they use clever propaganda to get the American people to believe the stupidity of trickle down economics or Reaganomics…tax cuts labeled tax reform that benefits few and those are the wealthy.

There is a good chance that all the hard work done by Repubs in 2017 may be for naught…..Reaganomics may not save the GOP this time…..

Republican hopes for holding control of Congress in the midterm elections hinge on the success of Reagan-style tax cuts and deregulation. However, without significant progress early this year on entitlements and infrastructure — with substantial focus on the chronic problems of rural communities and smaller cities — those policies may not prove to be enough.

During the Bush-Obama years, annual economic growth was only 1.8%, but the prosperity instigated by the expansion of financial services, biotechnology and digital industries was adequate to satisfy voters in the citadels of progressive thinking on the two coasts and among communities supported by major universities.

President Donald Trump won an unlikely victory in 2016 by energizing voters in the nation’s interior — places that fell victim to globalization and were left behind by the recent recovery.

2018 will be the tell of the tape…..will the economic double talk win the day?

Will Reagaomics save the GOP?

They’re Not Poor, We Are Stealing From Them

There was an uproar from the world when Trump made his sh*tholes comment…..but the truth is that the West has had centuries to steal wealth from these countries….colonialism may be long gone but the theft continues….

More than three decades after most African nations became independent, there is no consensus on the legacy of colonialism. With most African countries still only tottering on their feet and many close to collapse, some people ask whether the problem is due to Africa’s colonial experience or inherent adequacies of the African? For apologists of colonialism the answer is simple. Whatever may have been the shortcomings of colonial rule, the overall effect was positive for Africa. Sure, the colonial powers exploited Africa’s natural resources but on the balance, colonialism reduced the economic gap between Africa and the West, the apologists argue. Colonialism laid the seeds of the intellectual and material development in Africans. It brought enlightenment where there was ignorance. It suppressed slavery and other barbaric practices such as pagan worship and cannibalism. Formal education and modern medicine were brought to people who had limited understanding or control of their physical environment. The introduction of modern communications, exportable agricultural crops and some new industries provided a foundation for economic development. Africans received new and more efficient forms of political and economic organisation. Warring communities were united into modern nation-states with greater opportunity of survival in a competitive world than the numerous mini entities that existed before. Africa is in political and economic turmoil today, defenders of imperialism say, because it failed to take advantage of its inheritance from colonial rule. It was, they summarise, Africa’s inadequacies that made colonisation necessary and the outcome of post-independence self-rule suggests that the withdrawal by the colonial powers was premature.

What about those sh*thole countries?

Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?”

Donald Trump’s question to US politicians referred to African countries, Haiti and El Salvador in particular.

One answer to his racist question is historical and another is structural. Both underline how responsible the United States – and Europe – are for the conditions driving many to flee poverty and what the most developed states can do by working with African and central American governments and peoples to counteract and manage that flow. An African Union spokeswoman said: “Given the historical reality of how many Africans arrived in the United States as slaves, this statement flies in the face of all accepted behaviour and practice.”

Maybe you cannot see the theft……but in case you would like to know the facts……

Africa is poor, but we can try to help its people.

It’s a simple statement, repeated through a thousand images, newspaper stories and charity appeals each year, so that it takes on the weight of truth. When we read it, we reinforce assumptions and stories about Africa that we’ve heard throughout our lives. We reconfirm our image of Africa.

Try something different. Africa is rich, but we steal its wealth.

Africa is not poor, we are stealing its wealth

The West has been stealing Africa’s future….one resource at a time.