Closing Thought–28Feb23

Is DeSantis coming after Disney World?

The governor of Florida has taking control over the state’s institutions….he has come after individual rights,  books, education, even dogs and now he is after Disney…..”the happiest place on earth”…. but for how long?

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Monday savored his victory over the Walt Disney Co., selecting new members of a governing board under legislation he sought after the company objected to a parental rights bill he favored last year. “Today, the corporate kingdom finally comes to an end,” the Republican said at a Reedy Creek fire station in Lake Buena Vista, CNN reports. “There’s a new sheriff in town and accountability will be the order of the day.” The governor announced his replacements for the board, who require state Senate approval. They include DeSantis supporters such as conservative activists, a major Republican donor, and the spouse of the new chairman of the state GOP. DeSantis said the board is scheduled to meet next week, “so buckle up.”

Under the bill DeSantis signed on Monday, the board members will oversee infrastructure, services, and taxing authority for the special district that reigns over Disney’s theme parks in central Florida—clout that had belonged to the company. DeSantis hinted at exerting control over Disney’s content as well, per Deadline. “I think that all of these board members very much would like to see the type of entertainment that all families can appreciate,” he said. Members of both parties have been critical of DeSantis’ move. “Disney stepped into the fray. They lost,” former Vice President Mike Pence said last week. “But the idea of going after their taxing authority, that was beyond the scope of what I as a conservative limited government Republican would be prepared to do.”

DeSantis has become the very embodiment of the word authoritarian.

What other targets are in his demonic sights?

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“lego ergo scribo”


China And Ukraine–Part 2

China has been in the news lately but little has been about their involvement in the Ukraine/Russia conflict.

The news has come out that China was considering arming Russia….and the world lost its collective minds…..but maybe it was premature….

China’s representative to the UN on Thursday said that sending weapons to be used in the Ukraine war will not bring peace as the US is claiming Beijing is considering providing Moscow with military aid for the conflict.

“One year into the Ukraine crisis, brutal facts have offered ample proof that sending weapons will not bring peace, adding fuel to the fire will only exacerbate tensions, and prolonging and expanding the conflict will only make ordinary people pay an even heftier price,” China’s UN Deputy Ambassador Dai Bing told the UN General Assembly.

Dai stressed that China’s position is that the warring sides should begin peace talks as soon as possible. “We reiterate our appeal that diplomacy and negotiation cannot be abandoned, and efforts towards ceasefire and talks must go on,” he said.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has claimed that the US has information that China is “considering” arming Russia, but Beijing has denied the accusation. The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that the US was considering releasing intelligence that shows Beijing is weighing whether to supply Russia with weapons, but it’s not clear what information the US actually has.

In the early days of the war, US officials claimed Russia asked China for military assistance. But it was later revealed by a report from NBC News that the US didn’t have “hard evidence” to back up the claim.

China and Russia have drawn closer together since Russia invaded Ukraine one year ago as they face similar pressure from the West, but there’s still no sign that Beijing has decided to send weapons. Chinese officials maintain it’s their policy not to arm either side.


Was the news we got just to rattle our chains about China?

China has done something the US and NATO has not done….offered a possible peace plan…..

Although Ukraine didn’t rule it out, NATO and EU leaders were dismissive of a 12-point peace proposal issued Friday by China, saying its increasing ties to Russia disqualify the Beijing government from playing mediator. “China doesn’t have much credibility,” said NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, “because they have not been able to condemn the illegal invasion of Ukraine.” China’s highest-ranking diplomat promised to strengthen its relationship with Russia on a trip to Moscow this week, the Guardian reports, and Secretary of State Antony Blinken said China appears to be considering supplying weapons to Russia.

The proposal is addressed more to other nations, without calling for specific steps by Ukraine or Russia. It uses stern wording in opposing the use of nuclear weapons or the threat of it, as well as the development of chemical and biological weapons. “Nuclear proliferation must be prevented and nuclear crisis avoided,” the document says, while urging other nations to facilitate peace negotiations in which China would play a role. Other admonitions appear aimed at the US and the West, as when it warns against “expanding military blocs”—as in NATO.

That’s a Russian argument rejected by Ukraine and the West, that the war was started to keep Ukraine out of NATO, and it appears five lines into the paper. Many in the West saw the flaws in the proposal, which calls the fighting “the Ukraine crisis” and not a war, as fundamental. “The position paper doesn’t take into account who is the aggressor and who is the victim of an illegal and unjustified war of aggression,” an EU spokeswoman said, per Politico. China’s Foreign Ministry released the proposal on the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion, which was marked by protests around the world.

The proposal also condemns a “Cold War mentality,” a term that often refers to the United States and the U.S.-European military alliance NATO. “The security of a region should not be achieved by strengthening or expanding military blocs,” the proposal says. Russian President Vladimir Putin demanded a promise that Ukraine will not join the bloc before the invasion.

Other points call for a cease-fire, peace talks, protection for prisoners of war and stopping attacks on civilians, without elaborating, as well as keeping nuclear power plants safe and facilitating grain exports.

The 12 points are:

  1. Respecting the sovereignty of all countries
  2. Abandoning the Cold War mentality
  3. Ceasing hostilities
  4. Resuming peace talks
  5. Resolving the humanitarian crisis
  6. Protecting civilians and prisoners of war (POWs)
  7. Keeping nuclear power plants safe
  8. Reducing strategic risks
  9. Facilitating grain exports
  10. Stopping unilateral sanctions
  11. Keeping industrial and supply chains stable
  12. Promoting post-conflict reconstruction

The initial reaction from Kyiv was dismissive, with a senior adviser to President Zelensky saying any plan to end the war must involve the withdrawal of Russian troops to borders in place when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991.

However, Zelensky himself struck a more receptive tone in a news conference to mark the first anniversary of the conflict.

Not to worry the US will continue to dump money into Ukraine….so everyone is happy.

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