What The Hell Happened?

2016 was an election about change….a funny topic because Americans do not want change……it was a primary season about the rise of the outsiders….

We have a 3 branch system of government…..a great idea…but unfortunately ours does NOT work and has NOT worked for decades.

It’s 2020, four years from now. The campaign is under way to succeed the president, who is retiring after a single wretched term. Voters are angrier than ever—at politicians, at compromisers, at the establishment. Congress and the White House seem incapable of working together on anything, even when their interests align. With lawmaking at a standstill, the president’s use of executive orders and regulatory discretion has reached a level that Congress views as dictatorial—not that Congress can do anything about it, except file lawsuits that the divided Supreme Court, its three vacancies unfilled, has been unable to resolve.

On Capitol Hill, Speaker Paul Ryan resigned after proving unable to pass a budget, or much else. The House burned through two more speakers and one “acting” speaker, a job invented following four speakerless months. The Senate, meanwhile, is tied in knots by wannabe presidents and aspiring talk-show hosts, who use the chamber as a social-media platform to build their brands by obstructing—well, everything. The Defense Department is among hundreds of agencies that have not been reauthorized, the government has shut down three times, and, yes, it finally happened: The United States briefly defaulted on the national debt, precipitating a market collapse and an economic downturn. No one wanted that outcome, but no one was able to prevent it.

Source: How American Politics Became So Ineffective – The Atlantic

So the question remains…what the Hell happened?

That one is easy to analyze…..

Trumpism may have parallels in populist, nativist movements abroad, but it is also the culmination of a proud political party’s steady descent into a deeply destructive and dysfunctional state.

While that descent has been underway for a long time, it has accelerated its pace in recent years. We noted four years ago the dysfunction of the Republican Party, arguing that its obstructionism, anti-intellectualism, and attacks on American institutions were making responsible governance impossible. The rise of Trump completes the script, confirming our thesis in explicit fashion.

Source: The Republicans waged a 3-decade war on government. They got Trump. – Vox

And then some say it has been a 50 year struggle for the GOP…..a struggle to change the very definition of “American Values”……

The current U.S. presidential election cycle may seem over the top. But in one important way, it is no different than any other over the past several decades. Since the 1970s, presidential candidates running under the Republican ticket have successively shifted further and further to the political right. How many times have we heard—or said—that George W. Bush made Richard Nixon look like a liberal?

The rightward political shift is no accident. Since the end of World War II, far-right conservatives and libertarians have patiently laid the groundwork for a national climate receptive to their ideals of weak government and a strong corporate presence.

Source: The far-right’s 50-year project to transform American values with a clandestine ‘counterrevolution’

Now look at this country and what is happening…..the country is so divided that nothing gets accomplished….it is a program that will change nothing…..a program that will eventually destroy this country from the inside.

(I know it is a lot to take in…but it is worth reading all the links…that is if you see there is something wrong with this country….if not then return for the search for Pokemon).

From Red Scares to Orange Alerts

The most recent violence in Dallas has started the whole debate about the modern American police state…..plus all the deaths of civilians at the hands of the police……I have written about the militarization of the police forces in the past…..but I do enjoy my historic perspectives….

I found an excellent paper written for the Foundation of Economic Education on the subject……

By focusing on counter-subversion rather than rolling back the state, Cold War conservatism consolidated the imperial military establishment and laid the foundations for a domestic garrison state.

Following World War II, there was no general demobilization in the United States — something that had never happened before in the nation’s history. In 1947, Congress passed the National Security Act, which created the CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency, and created the framework for a permanent, globe-spanning military establishment under the aegis of what was now called the Department of Defense. Five years later, the National Security Agency, which originated as the US Army’s Cipher Bureau and Military Intelligence Branch in World War I, was given institutional permanence as well.

Source: From Red Scares to Orange Alerts: How the Cold War Launched the Modern American Police State | Foundation for Economic Education

All I ask is that this article is read with an open mind……that may be an impossible task sometimes…but please try…..

A New American Century or a Century of Wars?

I have heard all sorts of promises from all the prospective candidates over the last year or so……We have heard the America will be great again….and that we are looking at a new American century….and I have said that no matter who wins this election we are looking at many more years of war….possibly several generations…..”same old sh*t, different administration”……

So sports fans……what will it be….something new or more of the same…..?

Vladimir Putin recently manned up and admitted it. The United States remains the planet’s sole superpower, as it has been since the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. “America,” the Russian president said, “is a great power. Today, probably, the only superpower. We accept that.”

Think of us, in fact, as the default superpower in an ever more recalcitrant world.

Seventy-five years ago, at the edge of a global conflagration among rival great powers and empires, Henry Luce first suggested that the next century could be ours.  In February 1941, in his magazine LIFE, he wrote a famous essay entitled “The American Century.”  In it, he proclaimed that if only Americans would think internationally, surge into the world, and accept that they were already at war, the next hundred years would be theirs.  Just over nine months later, the Japanese attacked the U.S. fleet at Pearl Harbor, plunging the country into World War II.  At the time, however, Americans were still riven and confused about how to deal with spreading regional conflicts in Europe and Asia, as well as the rise of fascism and the Nazis.

Source: A new American Century or a Century of Wars and Refugees? | Informed Comment

It is YOU!  You will decide if were truly have a new American century or a century of wars….Your choice!

Truthful I am not optimistic I mean what can you expect a thoughtful vote from a society that goes looking for Pokemon?

Seriously

Declassified But Redacted

For months now the world has been waiting for the release of those damn 28 pages of the 9/11 report which some thought would implicate the Saudis in the attack……

Wait no longer…those damn pages are now in the public domain…..

The House Intelligence Committee on Friday released 28 previously classified pages from a 2002 congressional investigation into the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks.

Some suspected the document contains information linking Saudi Arabia to the attackers.

The Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. Abdullah Al-Saud said he welcomed the release of the redacted pages.

“Saudi Arabia has long called for the release of the classified ‘28 Pages,’ We hope the release of these pages will clear up, once and for all, any lingering questions or suspicions about Saudi Arabia’s actions, intentions, or long-term friendship with the United States,” he said in a statement.

“Saudi Arabia is working closely with the United States and other allies to eradicate terrorism and destroy terrorist organizations,” he added.

Here is the link for the pages released…….

Source: declasspart4.pdf

The pages are  redacted…..what part of that is declassified?

If you would like to refresh your memory on the 9/11 Report….the whole report then the link below is your source…..

Source: National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States

And after all this we still do NOT have the whole story……

Does something smell fishy to you?  If so then please join the club.

“It is not who you know but rather who you blow”…….says it all for me.

Send In A Clown

I thought the we Americans had a lock on toady politicians but the circus is bigger than I thought…..as a junkie for international situations I wanted to see how the new British PM would react to the role of her country in the world today…..

The UK has a new PM and she has a new foreign minister…Boris Johnson.

Was this the best she could do for her new cabinet?

Personally I think he is a clown…at best…..but some of his pronouncements should have eliminated him out front……

Turkey – May 2016

Boris Johnson wins a £1,000 prize for penning a rude poem about Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the Turkish president, having sex with a goat. His limerick, published by the Spectator as a rebuff to Erdoğan’s efforts to prosecute a German comedian’s offensive poem, also calls the Turkish leader a “wankerer”.

United States – April 2016

The MP for Uxbridge and Ruislip is criticised for describing Barack Obama as a “part-Kenyan” who harboured an “ancestral dislike” of Britain. He made the comments in a newspaper article after the US president supported the remain campaign during a visit to Britain.

Israel – November 2015

Johnson’s visit to the occupied Palestinian territories is severely curtailed by his hosts in protest at a series of strongly pro-Israel remarks. They included telling an audience in Tel Aviv that a trade boycott of Israeli goods was “completely crazy” and supported by “corduroy-jacketed, snaggletoothed, lefty academics in the UK”.

Japan – October 2015

Is filmed wiping out a 10-year-old Japanese schoolboy, Toki Sekiguchi, during a game of street rugby on a visit to Tokyo.

United States – June 2012

Johnson tells TV chat show host David Letterman that he “could be president of the United States, technically speaking” given that he was born in New York City on 19 June 1964.

China – August 2008

In Beijing for the closing ceremony of the Olympic Games, Johnson said “respectfully to our Chinese hosts” that ping pong was “invented on the dining tables of England in the 19th century. It was. And it was called wiff waff”.

United States – November 2007

In a Telegraph column headlined I Want Hillary Clinton to be President, Johnson describes the Democrat: “She’s got dyed blonde hair and pouty lips, and a steely blue stare, like a sadistic nurse in a mental hospital”.

Papua New Guinea – September 2006

In another attack on Tony Blair in another Telegraph column, Johnson wrote: “For 10 years we in the Tory party have become used to Papua New Guinea-style orgies of cannibalism and chief-killing and so it is with a happy amazement that we watch as the madness engulfs the Labour party.”

After later apologising for any offence caused, the then MP for Henley said he would be happy to “add Papua New Guinea to my global itinerary of apology”. However, he insisted he was not mistaken about cannibalism in the country: “My remarks were inspired by a Time Life book I have which does indeed show relatively recent photos of Papua New Guinean tribes engaged in warfare, and I’m fairly certain that cannibalism was involved.”

Just a small collection of some of Boris’ best zingers aimed at foreign stage……there is so much more about this clown….

Source: Boris Johnson and diplomacy are not synonymous | Politics | The Guardian

The UK can join the US as the butt of jokes in the world…..this should endear the UK to the world……

The ‘Socialist’ Obama

For 8 years there have been some that keep calling Obama a ‘socialist’….first of all these people would not know a socialist from a libertarian….these are the knuckle draggers that hear something they like and will repeat it ad nauseum…..second if one has the mental capability to look at Obama’s economics then they will see that he is more a free trader than Trump will ever be……

How many comments will there be based on the title alone?

Barack Obama’s presidency had an action-packed beginning. Stimulus plans! Bailouts! ObamaCare! Wall Street reform!

All of that — well more than $1 trillion of government spending and a sprawling thicket of new regulations — was enacted within Obama’s first year and a half. Republicans skewered this agenda as “big government.” Plenty of them branded it “socialist.”

But in this, the final year of Obama’s presidency, and a year in which a self-declared “democratic socialist” came surprisingly close to winning the Democratic presidential nomination, the “Obama is a socialist” chatter is a lot quieter. And rightly so. Because a clear-eyed view of Obama shows not some power-mad redistributionist, but a leader pushing the sort of pro-market economic reforms that the GOP’s own presumptive presidential nominee should be suggesting.

Source: Why ‘socialist’ Obama is more of a free marketeer than Trump

Bu6t none of this will stop the mentally challenged from using the term…..by now it is no longer frustrating at the lack of accuracy….now it is just pathetic.

Times They Are A Changing

It is the 21st century and women are making great strides in political spheres……many Western countries now have women as the leader….the US may soon elect its first woman president since its inception….the UK was the first western county to elect a women PM and many have since done the same…..Germany has a strong women leader……I believe Croatia has a woman leader (please do not quote me)…..

Looks liker this year will the year of the woman politician……

Margaret Thatcher was the first, but she’ll no longer be the only female prime minister the UK has ever had. Michael Gove has been eliminated from the ballot to become the next Conservative Party leader, leaving Theresa May and Andrea Leadsom as the final two candidates. The winner will become the UK’s next prime minister, the BBC reports. Home Affairs Secretary May (a Remain supporter) led the most recent round of voting Thursday with 199 votes, followed by Energy Minister Leadsom (a Brexit supporter) with 84 and Gove with 46. Conservative MPs will decide on a winner, who will take over the job from David Cameron on Sept. 9, the Washington Post reports.

We will see just how effective these countries become…..the world will be watching….

Please I would like to hear from the UK readers on how this will play….