A Station Of His Own

Closing Thought–17Nov20

Departing (we hope) Pres. Trump has been using FOX News as his personal news source…that is until he was contradicted by FOX on air….and he now has a hard on for the news group.

What to do….what to do?

About 4 years ago I wrote a couple of posts about the idea that Trump would try and start his own news network…..(the post did not appeal to many and got very little attention)…..here are the posts I one cares to read what I wrote before I go on…..

https://lobotero.com/2016/10/19/trump-news-network/

https://lobotero.com/2016/10/29/trumps-news-network-or-reality-show/

Now that my reader is caught up….the news is that Trump may start his own news group to get his message of hate and discord out more readily…..since FOX is not in his corner so much now….

President Donald Trump is considering launching a digital media company to challenge Fox News‘ supremacy among right-wing viewers, according to a report published at Axios on Thursday.

According to the report, Trump is fuming over Fox’s coverage before and during the 2020 election—especially the way the network preempted other corporate media outlets in calling the close race in Arizona for President-elect Joe Biden.

The president’s vexation with Fox—whose opinion program hosts including Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson, and Laura Ingraham have been among his staunchest media allies—was apparent even before the Arizona controversy during an Election Day appearance on “Fox & Friends,” another Trump safe space.

Fox has changed a lot,” Trump said. Discussing the different results of the 2016 and 2020 elections, the president remarked: “Somebody said, what’s the biggest difference between this and four years ago? And I say Fox.”

“I’m not complaining, I’m just telling people,” he added. “It’s one of the biggest differences this season compared to last.”

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/11/12/trump-mulling-streaming-online-channel-challenge-fox-news-report

Being typical to form….Trump will torture and attack anyone that does not show support for his lameass ideas….and that includes FOX News.

Will he be successful?

I believe he can find the funding from the fascists in the business world……and support from the closest fascists in our society.

BE Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Trump’s Troop Withdrawal

I have been writing on one issue that I agree with defeated Trump…..I agree that we should be ending these forever wars and bring our troops home.

Now there is more news on that front…..

The Trump administration is expected to cut the number of US troops in Afghanistan almost in half to 2,500 by Jan. 15, US officials said Monday. The order would stop short of outgoing President Trump’s goal to have all troops withdrawn by the end of the year, which had faced opposition from military and diplomatic advisers. The Pentagon also expects to cut the number of troops in Iraq to 2,500, the AP reports, a reduction of more than 500. The decisions come in the wake of Trump’s shakeup of the Pentagon leadership last week, in which he installed loyalists who share his frustration with the continued troop presence in the war zones. The cuts would give Trump an accomplishment in his final weeks in office. The officials said military leaders were told over the weekend about the planned withdrawals, and an executive order is in the works but has not yet been delivered to commanders. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations. There are 4,500 to 5,000 troops in Afghanistan, and more than 3,000 in Iraq.

Under the order, the troop cuts would be completed just five days before President-elect Joe Biden takes office, leaving him with a smaller military footprint in the two key war zones. Military commanders have expressed less concern about pulling more troops from Iraq, where the Iraqi forces are better able to maintain their nation’s security. Trump’s new Pentagon chief, Christopher Miller, hinted at the withdrawals over the weekend in a message to the force that suggested compromise. He said that “we remain committed to finishing the war that Al Qaida brought to our shores in 2001.” But he also made it clear that “all wars must end.” The accelerated withdrawal goes against longstanding advice from Trump’s military leadership, including Marine Gen. Frank McKenzie, top commander for the Middle East. But officials suggested this week that commanders will be able to live with the partial pullout, which lets them to keep counterterrorism troops in Afghanistan and allows more time to remove critical equipment.

The GOP may be the Party of Trump now but there are still issue they will not help Trump achieve…..

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) warned against a withdrawal from Afghanistan on Monday amidst reports that say the Pentagon is planning for a drawdown in the country.

McConnell, a staunch ally of President Trump, was careful to praise the administration’s foreign policy record before slamming the idea of an Afghanistan withdrawal. “A rapid withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan now would hurt our allies and delight the people who wish us harm,” McConnell said on the Senate floor.

McConnell went through the typical talking points for arguments against the US ending the 19-year-old war. He said a US withdrawal would “embolden the Taliban,” hand al-Qaeda a “propaganda victory,” and would be “welcome news” to Iran.

(antiwar.com)

What about those troops in Syria?

I know not much said lately about them but make no mistake they are there….even some confusion on just how many are there…..

Four years after signing the now-infamous “Never Trump” letter condemning then-presidential candidate Donald Trump as a danger to America, retiring diplomat Jim Jeffrey is recommending that the incoming Biden administration stick with Trump’s foreign policy in the Middle East.

But even as he praises the president’s support of what he describes as a successful “realpolitik” approach to the region, he acknowledges that his team routinely misled senior leaders about troop levels in Syria. 

“We were always playing shell games to not make clear to our leadership how many troops we had there,” Jeffrey said in an interview. The actual number of troops in northeast Syria is “a lot more than” the roughly two hundred troops Trump initially agreed to leave there in 2019. 

https://www.defenseone.com/threats/2020/11/outgoing-syria-envoy-admits-hiding-us-troop-numbers-praises-trumps-mideast-record/170012/

Keep in mind that Trump ordered the troops home in 2018…..but changed his mind (as he often does)…..

The withdrawal in my opinion is something positive coming from Trump……but I fear that they will (the M-IC) never allow this to succeed…..not to worry after all we have a new president that owes much to the high dollar donors…..in other words….the wars will continue.

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Will ACA Survive?

The program fondly titles as Obamacare has proven to be popular and yet the GOP seems Hell bent on its destruction…..as it comes before SCOTUS yet again.

Once again the ACA (Obamacare) comes before the Supreme Court….and once again it looks like the GOP will be beaten into submission…at least until next session…..

The Supreme Court heard its third challenge to ObamaCare on Tuesday, and a decision won’t be out until next spring. But the early assessments after oral arguments wrapped up should give backers of the Affordable Care Act some comfort—it looks like the law will survive again. Coverage:

  • “Most of the Affordable Care Act appeared likely to survive,” writes Sam Baker at Axios. He notes that Chief Justice John Roberts and Brett Kavanaugh “suggested they’re unlikely to throw out the entire health care law, as Republican attorneys general and the Trump administration have urged. Their votes would be enough to save it.”
  • That assessment is a common one. “The bulk of the Affordable Care Act … appeared likely to survive,” writes Adam Liptak in the New York Times. He, too, concluded that Roberts and Kavanaugh would join the court’s three liberal justices in saving the bulk of the law, even though Republicans scrapped a key component of it, the individual mandate. “In legal terms, they said the mandate was severable from the rest of the law,” writes Liptak.
  • At the AP, Mark Sherman agrees with all of the above. It’s possible the court will determine that the mandate itself is unconstitutional, but it doesn’t appear that Roberts and Kavanaugh would be willing to kill the entire law if that’s the case. He quotes Roberts: “Would Congress want the rest of the law to survive if the unconstitutional provision were severed? Here, Congress left the rest of the law intact. That seems to be a compelling answer to the question.”
  • John Kruzel of the Hill agrees, too, and he quotes Kavanaugh to make the point: “Looking at our severability precedents, it does seem fairly clear that the proper remedy would be to sever the mandate provision and leave the rest of the act in place, the provisions regarding preexisting conditions and the rest.”
  • Ditto at the Washington Post, whose story is written by multiple reporters. They note that Roberts wrote the 2012 opinion keeping the law intact and say he (and Kavanaugh) seem inclined to do that again. Another Roberts quote, in regard to the individual mandate: “I think it’s hard for you to argue that Congress intended the entire act to fall if the mandate were struck down when the same Congress that lowered the penalty to zero did not even try to repeal the rest of the act,” Roberts told Texas solicitor Kyle Hawkins. He suggested lawmakers wanted the court to do that for them, “but that’s not our job.”

How long before the next challenge comes?

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

 

Biden’s Pentagon

I have written in the past that I think a Biden admin will be hawkish…….first here….

Then his transition team for the Pentagon signals that he will be a Hawk….why?

So far they are all war profiteers, chicken hawks, corporate stoolies…..https://thegrayzone.com/2020/11/14/bidens-transition-team-war-profiteers-chickenhawks-corporate-consultants/

Look at his transition team members….

Two members of the transition team come from the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), Susanna Blume, a former Pentagon employee, and Ely Ratner, who served as deputy national security advisor to then-vice president Joe Biden from 2015 to 2017.

CNAS is another think tank that enjoys hefty donations from weapons makers, major corporations, and governments. From 2019 to 2020, CNAS received at least $500,000 from the US State Department and at least $500,000 from Northrop Grumman. Other donors include Google, Facebook, Raytheon, and Lockheed Martin.

Three more team members list their latest employer as the RAND Corporation, Stacie Pettyjohn, a wargaming expert, Christine Wormuth, who held a few roles in the Obama administration, and Terri Tanielian, a behavioral scientist.

RAND is another hawkish think tank that receives the bulk of its funding from the US government, including the US Army, Air Force, and Department of Homeland Security. RAND is also funded by the UAE, Qatar, and NATO.

A report from In These Times found at least eight out of the 23 team members come from organizations that receive funding from US weapons makers (not including RAND). Besides the CSIS and CNAS employees listed above, In These Times includes Sharon Burke, who works for New America, Shawn Skel­ly, from CACI International, and Vic­tor Gar­cia, from Rebellion Defense.

(antiwar.com)

The only positive thing I can say about this team is that the majority are women.

So the burning question of the campaign because it was never addressed by either candidate ….so the question was Will Biden be a Warmonger or Peacemaker?

Keep in mind that his so-called front runner is the person that is leader of CNAS which most of his transition team comes from…..gives her the inside lane….I would say.

His choices have answered the question…the arms industry wins ergo so does armed conflict.  For further analysis….https://www.defensenews.com/pentagon/2020/11/10/biden-landing-team-for-pentagon-announced/  and more here….https://www.counterpunch.org/2020/11/11/will-the-biden-team-be-warmongers-or-peacemakers/

Looks like very little will change within the Pentagon with the exception of the secretary who has already resigned/fired…..

More analysis to follow…

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“lego ergo scribo”

Biden And North Korea

North Korea….remember them?

We have seen just how impotent the Trump policies have been in the curtailing of NK’s nuclear ambitions.

Well we have a new president and he has his finger on foreign policy….or so we are told….

What is Biden’s thoughts?

Look for familiar names from the presidency of Barack Obama to deal with North Korea after the inauguration of Joseph Biden as president on Jan. 20. Biden, having served as vice president for two terms under Obama, knows these old-timers well and may be inclined to name some of them to influential positions in hope, finally, of bringing North Korea to terms on its nuclear program.

The chances of Kim Jong-un saying, “right, we agree, and we’re giving up our nukes and missiles and the facilities for making them” range from nil to zero, but Christopher Hill, who led the Americans in failed six-party talks on North Korea’s nukes and then in frustrating negotiations with North Korea’s Kim Gye-gwan, never loses hope. In a Biden presidency, he said in a recent panel discussion, “There will be a little more focus on the substance of engagement and why we are willing to engage.”

…Biden’s “first order of business is going to be to fix the alliances.” No, he said, “it’s not just NATO,” the North Atlantic Treaty Organization that formed the bulwark of allied defenses against the old Soviet Union in the Cold War era and now faces Russia, whose president, Vladimir Putin, definitely would prefer Trump. For nearly four years, Trump did his best to undermine NATO, blasting its members for not contributing, cutting back on U.S. forces and, disgracefully, trying to finesse a trade-off with Ukraine on military assistance against Russia in return for Ukraine digging up dirt on Biden’s son, Hunter. 

https://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/opinion/2020/11/353_299127.html

New president…will US troops stay in South Korea?  Will Kim remain the social outcast or will a new day dawn in US/NK relations?

It will be interesting to see just in what direction the policies involving the Korean Peninsula will travel.

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“lego ergo scribo”