The Worst In History

Closing Thought–14Mar19

Every president is ranked by a group over 200 presidential historians…..and the newest survey is out…..

The result were posted by Sharedblue Media……..

Trump lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton by 3 million votes. But on Presidents Day, he finally won something fair and square: the title of worst president ever.

According to the “Presidential Greatness Survey” published Monday by the American Political Science Association, Trump is ranked 44th out of 44 presidents. The survey counts President Grover Cleveland’s non-consecutive administrations as a single presidency, thus sparing Trump from being ranked one spot lower.

The survey also ranked President Obama 8th overall, making him the the greatest living president, one spot ahead of Ronald Reagan.

But even among Republican respondents to the survey, Trump could only manage a ranking of 40th out of 44, edging out James Buchanan, Franklin Pierce, William Henry Harrison — who died in office just one month into his first term — and Andrew Johnson.

By contrast, President Obama’s first appearance in this survey in 2014 placed him at 18th, and a group of 238 presidential historians ranked Obama 15th after his first year in office.

Trump’s first year in office has been marked by historically low approval numbers, an embarrassing trend that was continued by a five-point drop in his weekly approval rating from Gallup.

If there is any consolation for Trump, it’s that he can’t possibly drop any lower in this ranking during whatever time he has left in office.

I am sure that somewhere on the “web” there are people that will disagree and the excuse will be “fake news” or a conspiracy by those “liberal” academics….or some other equally ridiculous belief……so I say to them…”Sorry your bromance sucks as a president”……..

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Summits: Garbage In, Garbage Out

Our Beloved Supreme Leader just had a horrible and unproductive meeting (some call it a “summit”) with North Korea’s Kim…..but to listen to his rhetoric it was a success with the Dems trying to hang some criminality around his neck……but what of the so-called “summits”…….

Let’s step back to the beginning……

As far as is known, the first professional diplomatic corps appeared in the Byzantine Empire following the collapse of Rome in 476 AD. Byzantium established the world’s first department of foreign affairs, developed strict and complex diplomatic protocols, and actively sought intelligence about friend and enemy alike. Surrounded by enemies, Byzantium needed all the skill in diplomacy it could muster.

The art of diplomacy was carried to the next higher (some might say lower) plane in Italy during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. The Italian city-states of the era engaged in constant intrigues against each other. During this era, diplomacy became identified with behind-the-scenes scheming, duplicity, and double-dealing. Niccolo Machiavelli of Florence, whom many consider the father of “realist” views of the international system, stressed in his book The Prince (1532) that rulers should use whatever means they had at their disposal to stay in power.

https://www.diplomaticourier.com/from-ancient-greek-diplomacy-to-modern-summitry/

Summits and summitry have their uses in a modern foreign policy…a constructive foreign policy (there’s the rub….we, the US, no longer has a constructive foreign policy)…….

It should not be regarded as an instant elixir for the assuagement of crises to dissimulate relief from the realities of inter-governmental ailment (1979, p. 186).

To begin with, this essay will discuss both on some of the possible strengths and flaws of the different types summits. It also argues on how summitry can be infused as a tool of a constructive means of diplomacy and it will also unearth some factors that could help determine the success of summits. The first part of this essay discusses on how summitry could be a tool in the engagement of public diplomacy and followed by with an insight on how timing is crucial in initiating a summit. Meanwhile, the second part of this essay details on how summitry could provide an opportunity for state leaders to administrate and show their capabilities in winning a summit.

https://www.ukessays.com/essays/politics/summitry-analysis-diplomacy-7750.ph

This is where the Trump summits go off the rail…..a summit should NOT be an elixir for a solution to whatever problem it tries to address.

And yet Trump himself billed his “summits” as a solution to North Korea’s rush to nuke weapons…..

So far nothing but a few exchanged “love” between the two leaders and the search for nukes continued…

Summits are a diplomatic tool not necessarily the end of the search of solutions to problems….something someone needs to teach to our president….maybe then he would stop embarrassing the country on the world stage.

Closing Thought–25Feb19

WE have been bombarded with the possibility the our president might have committed some crime or another…..plus so many of his advisers have been convicted and others are awaiting trial….all that got me to thinking…..how does other presidential administrations stack up against the Trump as far as people and crime?

And now for your history lesson…(damn you knew that was going, right?)

DAMN!  Did you know that GOP administrations are 38 times more criminal than that of the Dems?

38 times!

Republican administrations have vastly more corruption than Democratic administrations. We provide new research on the numbers to make the case.

We compared 28 years each of Democratic and Republican administrations, 1961-2016, five Presidents from each party. During that period Republicans scored eighteen times more individuals and entities indicted, thirty-eight times more convictions, and thirty-nine times more individuals who had prison time.

Given the at least 17 active investigations plaguing President Trump, he is on a path to exceed previous administrations, though the effects of White House obstruction, potential pardons, and the as-yet unknown impact of the GOP’s selection of judges may limit investigations, subpoenas, prosecutions, etc. Of course, as we are comparing equal numbers of Presidents and years in office from the Democratic and Republican parties, the current President is not included.

We’re aware some of our numbers differ from other totals, but we explain our criteria below.

https://rantt.com/gop-admins-had-38-times-more-criminal-convictions-than-democrats-1961-2016/

If we look back at our history then the troubles with the Trump administrations should be nothing of a surprise.

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Class Dismissed!

Say Good-Bye To The Shah

I have to go to the doctor this morning so I leave (for now) with a history lesson (was that an eye roll?)

40 years on and the US is still slobbering to return to the days of the Shah…but the Fall……

the 40th anniversary of the Iranian Revolution, we published an articleexplaining what the revolution can teach us about the economic and political problems facing Iran now. Today, I’d like to focus on the geopolitical implications of the revolution that saw the overthrow of the Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, and the rise of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. It was a formidable time for the country, but the existing geopolitics of the region remained largely intact.

Most observers didn’t expect the shah to fall, although many claimed afterward that they had predicted it. The shah, who was essentially installed by the United States and Britain, was used as a bulwark of the American containment strategy. He unseated democratically elected Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh, who the U.S. feared was aligned with the Soviets, and helped to block Soviet access to the Persian Gulf. He claimed to be the heir to the Iranian monarchy, but in reality, he sat on the throne because of a coup staged in 1925 by his father, Reza Shah Pahlavi, a military officer who himself had no connections to the long line of Persian monarchs.

Mohammad Reza Pahlavi enjoyed immense wealth but left his people profoundly unsatisfied, both economically and spiritually. Emulating Turkey’s Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, his father had sought a secular, militarist and authoritarian path to modernization. Iran’s merchant class didn’t care much about the modernization plans and demanded a cut of the country’s wealth. The shah appeared indifferent to their plight.

Khomeini did not. He bound up the grievances of the merchants and the peasants with the tenets of Shiite Islam. While sitting in exile in Paris, he sent copies of his sermons and speeches in which he laid out how the shah had betrayed Islam and stolen the wealth of the nation through his lavish and lascivious lifestyle. Experts dismissed him and the growing dissatisfaction, believing that discontent was a constant reality in Iran and that the shah could contain it.

From the American point of view, the shah was a great comfort. In 1973, OPEC, led by Saudi Arabia, had cut off oil shipments to the United States and parts of Europe. At the time, the Saudis were involved in the Arab-Israeli War and sought to outflank Soviet-sponsored Arab movements, especially Palestinian ones. The Soviets had supported coups in Iraq and Syria and backed paramilitary groups from both countries that were formally designed to confront Israel but were actually far more focused on Saudi Arabia. If Saudi Arabia could be destabilized and the flow of oil interrupted, the Soviets thought, the position of the United States and Western Europe would be vastly weakened.

But the Saudis beat the Soviets to the punch by imposing an oil embargo themselves, undercutting Soviet attempts to make it appear that Saudi Arabia was an American puppet. The price of oil soared, creating a global recession. For the United States, the embargo was a mixture of pain and pleasure. On one hand, it caused massive economic disruption. On the other, it was Saudi Arabia, not a Soviet-linked Palestinian group, presiding over an Arab renaissance.

Iran, an enemy of Saudi Arabia, continued to ship oil to the West and made a lot of money in the process, which it largely spent on defense. There was serious talk of Iran becoming a regional hegemon and a nuclear power. The U.S. didn’t vigorously object to any of this. Given the global oil shortage, even after the embargo had ended, the United States had two overriding interests: to contain the Soviet Union and its apparent proxy, Iraq, and to ensure access to the Persian Gulf through the Strait of Hormuz.

U.S. intelligence worked closely with SAVAK, the shah’s intelligence service. The agency became Washington’s chief source of information on Iran – but SAVAK didn’t transmit any warning about the uprising to the U.S., either because it didn’t want to or because it didn’t anticipate the level of the unrest. Moreover, the United States’ other intelligence sources in Iran were part of the elite – the higher the sources, the greater the knowledge they can share, or so the U.S. believed. The problem, however, was that the elites were profiting from their ties to the regime and so were unlikely to reveal evidence of its demise until it was too late.

More important, it’s not easy to find sources who know when uprisings will occur and how they will turn out. The last people to know the shah was going to fall were those in the powerful classes, on whom the U.S. relied for intelligence. The idea that an extreme Shiite leader, sitting in exile in Paris, could manage an uprising against the man who could have brought the country to regional hegemony ran counter to all notions of power and continuity in Washington. President Jimmy Carter went out of his way to show his support for the shah almost to the end. It was inconceivable that the powerful would not remain powerful, or that a trained army could not defeat a rabble of protesters.

Those outside the government were equally deluded. Human rights groups loathed the shah for torturing and murdering his people. They made the same mistake that similar groups often make: believing that if a vile government is overthrown, what replaces it will be better. To appease his dissenters, Khomeini appointed a moderate, Mehdi Bazargan, as prime minister. But Bazargan’s liberal positions came into conflict with those of the radical Shiites who controlled the revolution, and his government fell.

The U.S. learned two lessons from this experience. First, you can’t rely solely on official intelligence sources to figure out what’s happening on the ground. Sometimes, the most valuable piece of intel is the reality staring you in the face. Second, geopolitics can be shifted but not obliterated. Iran under an Islamic regime was as hostile to Iraq and the Saudis and ambivalent toward the Kurds as it was under a secular one. Some things changed (Iran became hostile toward the United States), but other things stayed the same (its tensions with the Soviets continued). And as hostile as the U.S.-Iran relationship became, the U.S. continued to help supply Iran with weapons (hence the Iran-Contra affair). Geopolitically, regime change doesn’t alter as much as you might expect.

I’m still surprised at the failure of truly intelligent men and women in and out of government to understand that the shah was about to fall. In the 1980s, many of us were equally unable to grasp that the Soviets were hanging on for dear life. What is so obvious in retrospect was shrouded in the moment. But it shouldn’t have been. It was there for all to see, but recognizing it required looking behind the appearance of power and breaking the habit of believing that things always stay the same. The fall of the shah meant many things, but the failure to foresee his demise was ultimately about a lack of imagination and the inability to grasp that what was true yesterday might not be true tomorrow.

Your history lesson is complete…….and now a Neocon assessment of Iran…..

Forr almost two years, before President Trump ordered the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria in December 2018, the Trump administration pursued an Iran policy based on the use of all instruments of national power to stop Tehran from engaging in a wide array of aggressive and malign behaviors that defy global norms. In his May 21, 2018 speech, “A New Iran Strategy,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called on Iran to end verifiably its nuclear weapons and advanced ballistic missile programs, cease its support for terrorism and the destabilization of foreign governments, release all hostages, and halt its aggression against Israel and other U.S. allies.1

To achieve these objectives, the administration designed a strategy to pressure the regime – diplomatically, economically, and militarily. To that end, the administration walked away from the nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and reinstated the comprehensive sanctions that had forced Iran to the negotiating table in 2013. The focal point of U.S. strategy was to intensify the Iranian regime’s ongoing liquidity crisis, which threatened to cripple its economy as a whole. The secretary of state also insisted the U.S. “will advocate tirelessly for the Iranian people,” who endure grave human rights violations and pervasive corruption. The Trump administration made it clear that it did not seek regime change, but would take advantage of the Islamic Republic’s deficit of legitimacy. In short, the U.S. purported to implement a policy of maximum pressure.

https://www.fdd.org/analysis/2019/01/31/midterm-assessment-iran/

According to the Neocons we should fear Iran…….but they prefer bullsh*t to facts…..

Passing The Barr

Last week we had hours upon hours of the silly politicians playing to the cameras…..the hearings for the AG replacement, Barr.

I say silly because he has got to go through the Senate and those goddamn cowards have already decided what to do so why bore the piss out of the rest of us to make some partisan point?

But okay let’s look at the new AG….William Barr (he is the wrong person to lead DoJ in my opinion he is a political hack…perfect for the Trump admin that is top heavy with political hacks)……

While the hearings focused on Mueller…there is so much more that needs telling about this person…..

The Senate Judiciary Committee hearings for Attorney General nominee William Barr have focused heavily on Barr’s views on Special Counsel Robert Mueller. But nobody is asking about Barr’s legal crusade for blanket immunity for federal agents who killed American citizens.

Barr received a routine questionnaire from the Judiciary Committee asking him to disclose his past work including pro bono activities “serving the disadvantaged.” The “disadvantaged” that Barr spent the most time helping was an FBI agent who slayed an Idaho mother holding her baby in 1992. Barr spent two weeks organizing former Attorneys General and others to support “an FBI sniper in defending against criminal charges in connection with the Ruby Ridge incident.” Barr also “assisted in framing legal arguments advanced… in the district court and the subsequent appeal to the Ninth Circuit,” he told the committee.

 
But there is more to this nominee…including a possible stint with the CIA……
 

Why was Barr chosen, given his shocking and deeply criminal/cover-up kingpin background?

Was Trump duped by Deep State enemies, who have placed another predator into his administration with the power to destroy his presidency? Or has Trump co-opted and turned Barr, in the hopes that Barr will do Trump’s bidding? Why would Barr ever turn against his own Deep State cronies?

Does Trump have a plan? With Barr in place, is Trump signaling to his enemies that “I now own the Deep State”? Or is Barr the Deep State’s ultimate and final weapon against Trump, who remains surrounded by Bush/Clinton “swamp creatures” such as National Security Adviser John Bolton, who is one of Barr’s many fellow Iran-Contra co-conspirators, Vice President Mike Pence (who is in ideal position for a coup against Trump, and remains very cozy with the Clintons, dozens of Obama appointees that remain in place, and Republican “Never Trumpers”, all of whom continue to undermine Trump.

https://www.globalresearch.ca/ciabushiran-contra-covert-operative-fixer-william-barr-nominated-attorney-general/5662609

Just a little background that is lacking in his run for the head chair of the DOJ…..interesting that very little of this has come out in the hearings….the questioners had an agenda and they blotted out all other concerns.

This person should NOT be allowed to control the DOJ it will be a mistake.  (Personal opinion)

The Balkans

The Balkans have been the source of much conflict since the 1990’s and the break-up of Yugoslavia…..but in case you are not aware of the problems…..

I have several followers from the region so I like to keep up to date on the events of the region…..recently Macedonia made the news as a nation that is trying for NATO membership…..https://lobotero.com/2018/06/13/macedonia-whats-in-a-name/

There is some bad news about their possible membership…..

When Fox News host Tucker Carlson asked Donald Trump last month why he should send his son to die defending Montenegro, NATO’s newest member, the president seemed to repudiate his own administration’s policy. He indicated that Americans shouldn’t be willing to sacrifice their lives for such a trivial ally. Furthermore, he warned that Montenegro “has very aggressive people. They may get aggressive, and congratulations, you’re in World War III.” As Cato Institute senior fellow Doug Bandow pointed out, Trump’s comment was odd on two counts. First, the Senate approved the admission of Montenegro on his watch in March 2017. If he thought that latest episode of adding a useless microstate to the Alliance was unwise, he could have withdrawn the treaty from consideration before the Senate vote. Second, as Bandow notes archly, that while “it is theoretically possible that the vast, aggressive, powerful Montenegrin legions might launch themselves towards Moscow,” it isn’t too likely, because Montenegrin leaders “do not appear to have entirely lost their minds.”

https://nationalinterest.org/blog/skeptics/how-macedonia-could-push-nato-war-29702

Most nations of the old Yugoslavia have become members of NATO all but Serbia……and it appears that Serbia is growing closer to Russia than its neighbors…..

Serbia’s air force received two Russian MiG-29 fighter jets as part of an arms purchase that could heighten tensions in the Balkans and increase Moscow’s influence in the region.

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic attended the ceremony on Tuesday at a military airport close to the Serbian capital, Belgrade, thanking Russian President Vladimir Putin for helping make Serbia’s armed forces stronger.

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/europe/2018/08/russia-delivers-fighter-jets-serbia-180821171328018.html

Could Serbia be trying to flex its military muscle again?

Serbia might reintroduce compulsory military service, nine years after abolishing it, to help improve the combat readiness of its army in the Balkans, where tensions occasionally flare, President Aleksandar Vucic said on Tuesday.

The armed forces of Serbia, which emerged as an independent state after the bloody collapse of former Yugoslavia in the 1990s, were fully professionalised in 2011, but remain poorly paid and equipped.

https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-serbia-army/serbia-may-reintroduce-compulsory-military-service-president-idUKKCN1L61H1

Serbia has a long history pf hatred aimed at their neighbor Croatia….but why?  (a little history for your help)

Closing Thought–09Aug18

Ever heard of “Bock’s Car”?

Nope not some fanciful car from the past.

Would you know what I mean if I said….”Enola Gay”?

Almost all Americans know the name of the plane that dropped the first A-Bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima.

“Bock’s Car” is the name of the plane that dropped the second and final A-Bomb on Nagasaki that ended World War Two.

Today is the anniversary of the 2nd bomb dropped on Japan that devastated the town of Nagasaki just days after the bomb on Hiroshima.

By August 1945, U.S. Navy submarines and aerial mining by the Army Air Forces severely restricted Japanese shipping. The AAF controlled the skies over Japan and the AAF’s B-29 bombing attacks crippled its war industry. A plan for the invasion of Japan had been drawn up; Operation Olympic was scheduled for November 1945. Estimates of Allied casualties ranged from 250,000 to a million with much greater losses to the Japanese. To repel invaders, Japan had a veteran army of some two million ready, an army that had already shown its ferocity and fanaticism in combat. Some 8,000 military aircraft were available that could be used for devastating Kamikaze (suicide) attacks on U.S. ships. The draft had been extended to include men from age 15 to 60 and women from 17 to 45, adding millions of civilians ready to defend their homeland to the death, with sharpened sticks if necessary.

https://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/Visit/Museum-Exhibits/Fact-Sheets/Display/Article/196194/bockscar-the-aircraft-that-ended-wwii/

But why a second bomb?  Was the devastation of Hiroshima not enough?

Everyone knows that Nagasaki came three days after Hiroshima — but Nagasaki doesn’t get talked about nearly as much. The reason Nagasaki gets “overlooked” is pretty obvious: being the second atomic bombing attack is a lot less momentous than the first, even if the total number of such attacks has so far been two.

http://blog.nuclearsecrecy.com/2013/08/09/why-nagasaki/

Just a little history to close my posting day.

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