Open menu; contribute as you will….

whale shark
I’m working on something else, so I thought I’d stick up a new open menu.  Please talk to one another if you wish; I’ll pop in as I can. If you bring a title or link, you might want to include some of the salient points within; rants are also encouraged.  ;-)  My meager contributions:

Jeffrey St. Clair featured this passage from Good as Gold in his Roaming Charges today; it was written by one of my all-time favorite authors, Joseph Heller:

(In this scene, Gold is being interviewed for a post in the new presidential Administration…)

“What would I have to do?”

“Anything you want, as long as it’s everything we tell you to say and do in support of our policies, whether you agree with them or not. You’ll have complete freedom.”

Gold was confused. He said delicately, “I can’t be bought, Ralph.”

“We wouldn’t want you if you could be, Bruce,” Ralph responded. “This President doesn’t want yes-men. What we want are independent men of integrity who will agree with all our decisions after we make them.”

“Wouldn’t I have to know anything?”

“Absolutely not,” Ralph answered, and appeared astounded that Gold even should ask. “In government, Bruce, experience doesn’t count and knowledge isn’t important. If there’s one lesson of value to be learned from the past, Bruce, it’s to grab what you want when the chance comes to get it.”

Gold asked with distress, “Is that good for the world?”

“Nothing’s good for the world, Bruce. I thought you knew that.”

37 responses to “Open menu; contribute as you will….

  1. Reports from the hermitage, offer information of international importance; Bangkok street food is not doomed.
    After an international outcry, the Junta has reconsidered its position and softened its stance.
    There will be some adjustments, but hark, the street food venders will prevail…mostly…

    • hooray! power to the people! but ‘international outcry’, that’s big.

      i’ll add my own personal report: our daughter-in-law reports that our son, her husband, is back in communication after a week or ten days of none…in first kuwait, then qatar after being sent from his ‘base’ in the uae. the other good news is that he flunked out of air attack training, which was hard for him, but was ♫music to my ears♪.

  2. Hi wd, glad to hear your son is less likely to be put in harm’s way. Your post is somewhat synchronicitous (is that a word?) because last week I was going through my mountains of books hoping to clear space by donating to the library (alas, I could only bear to part with three) and Heller’s Good as Gold was one of them…. Hadn’t read it yet but the excerpt you quoted makes me want to.

    I’m posting this here because I can’t find the thread where we were discussing Tulsi Gabbard. Yes, I think we are misunderstanding each other, so I want to clarify: I am not laboring under the illusion that a savior is going to rise from the ranks of electoral politics, nor am I advocating lesser-evilism or God forbid, Clinton style “triangulation”….But everything I say past this point reveals where my thinking becomes muddled, and that’s why I posed the question on your other open thread as to what are your and your commentariat’s overarching political philosophy, if you have one.

    Because I don’t have one. Commenter j, I believe answered that he didn’t believe mild reforms would work, but guns weren’t the answer either…..Which is basically all I can come up with. I can identify much more easily the things I oppose than the things I am in favor of. Ghandian non-violent revolution for sure, but our population in it’s ignorance kinda kills that one in the cradle, amirite?

    The only reason I find myself defending Tulsi in the extremely circumscribed instances in which she speaks truth to power is that electoral politics, however useless they may be at this juncture, are a reality we have to live with and I view elected officials as kind of a soil in which were stuck with in which to try to grow a true revolution and I’d rather have that soil comprised of politicians who have some semblance of a conscience, or common sense, or sanity, than to try to grow that revolution in a soil of Trump’s and Clintons and Obama’s and Schumer’s. Muddled thinking? Admittedly….Yes! That’s why I would like to hear other people’s perspectives. I was reading Michael Parenting, and his defense of the concept of “dictatorship of the Proletariat” , a concept I’ve always had a knee-jerk reaction against, but his defense (if I’m even reading him correctly) was eloquent and convincing.(but I still hate and reject it). Localism, anarchism, are much more my cuppa (nice expression btw) but don’t take into account realities of hard power I’m, again I turn back to Gandhi but impossible with no mass consciousness. What a vicious circle. I guess all I can do is proceed with the Cynicalseeker revolution, one convert at a time and hope the US doesn’t blow up the planet….

    • thank you, c seeker. may he stay out of harm’s way, but for now… synchronous, maybe? but heller’s mastery of amerikan satire is mind-boggling. who will ever forget milo minderbender’s financializing the war, for instance? ‘all of you own stock shares, that’s why i traded your parachutes for eggs!’

      i dunno where that thread was either, but as i’m only popping in for now, i’d seen your comment via site email, and not having read parenti’s book, nor knowing almost zip about socialist/communist dialectics, i googled and found this rebuttal. and no, i haven’t taken the time to read it. i’ve spent most of the day working on a new diary.

      also, i thought you might like to take a look at today’s popular resistance newsletter reports of coming resistance actions and whatnot. i’m zeroing in on finishing said diary, and if i get a second wind tonight, i may come back. but i admit, i’m bloody tired of words for now.

  3. There is major political realignment going on in the world, not just the US, and it has to do with the reaction to the highjacking of the 1970s longing for interdependency as a basis for ending war by economic imperial globalism and purer capitalism. The UK, France, and probably Germany as well are undergoing their own realignments.

    In the US, there are currently five pretty hard-nosed faction (maybe six) in the US Congress. Reagan Republicans, Tea Party Republicans, Freedom Caucus Republicans, Progressive Democrats (a shifting bunch of policies), New Democrats (Clinton Democrats minus Clinton), and the last rump of Blue Dog Democrats. The fragmentation in the the GOP is sufficient for them to shut down the government by themselves. And soon. The only question is whether the Democrats will be fragmented enough to bail out the GOP at the last minute. And the GOP escape the lesson of how dangerous their tactics actually are for governance.

    Democratic unity could result in government collapse. That’s the positive outcome, if you think about it. The GOP has placed itself in absolute power; it’s time for them to govern, however they decide to do it. At least the public will know clearly that the screwer has changed even if the screwee hasn’t.

    By the 4th of July we will know whether this is an abrupt or a rolling crisis. All of which makes Tulsi Gabbard more or less salient a concern for 2020.

    If you want to use electoral politics, you have to remember that there are 218 Congressional districts that make up the majority of the House of Representatives, and each Congressional District requires 175,000 voters actually going to the polls, casting their votes, and having the votes count to win just one house in Congress. That means mobilizing 38,150,000 voters. If you’ve got a personal network, the 218 candidates in geographically strategic positions, and a way of ensuring that those 38,150,000 voters turn out, you can claim a popular majority in the polls in 2018. Then those 218 freshmen House members will have to work with each other to get the people’s work done without allowing the corrupt DC environment to lead them to the usual post-political advancement concerns. For those with the clarity on insight and youth to do this–you only need to be 25 to run for Congress–more power to them. I would suggest primarying everyone of every party with a bunch of young whippersnappers. No more safe districts, no more quiet gerrymanders. It’ll at least give the media a new angle on a midterm and might get more people to turn out to the important elections.

    Tulsi Gabbard is 36 this year and will be 39 in 2020. Her best move is to win the Hawaii governorship or beat Mazie Hirono for the Senate in 2018. Few people have reached the Presidency from the House of Representatives. It rings of experience. Both Richard Nixon and JFK were around 37 when they were elected to the Senate. The key point to remember is that the candidacy must not be a marketing campaign that is chained to the mass media and isolates the candidate from the voters. With a population of 330 million in the US, I don’t know how one deals with those numbers and actually have an actual sense of where voters are and what their most perceived interests are. Democracy depends on some means of actual political conversation that is in fact two-way. And a continuing process that can be transferred to office that is in fact two-way. This is what politicians somewhat had in the 1950s with a lot of ordinary people that they no longer bother to cultivate. The fate of the “Town Hall” meeting format is symptomatic of that sort of arrogance and grassroots anger. It will take a different process even from Sanders’s experiments last year.

    Revolutions occur when the ancien regime collapses its opposition and is captured or flees and all or the “business as usual” functions of society get suspended with workers wanting to know “what do I do now” that the boss who told me what to do is gone.

    The “dictatorship of the proletariat” is a principle, not a proposal. What it actually means has to be worked out in practice like the Occupy general assemblies. There are some sticky practical issues: Who exactly is a proletarian? What form of polity should the dictatorship take–autocratic, aristocratic, or democratic? How do actions scale up from local areas to the entire society, or does fragmentation as a process occur deliberately? How does food get grown, products get manufactured, transportation services delivered, utility services delivered while the proletariat figures out how to use their power to run the society preserving liberty, equality, and fraternity? How do they deal with the original sin of economy – commodification?

    I’ve had some mental spinning going on about some of this. What, for example, would be the consequences of the political taking of the Nevada legislature and the Delaware legislature in an election and in the first hundred days repealing the entire section of Corporation Law and the reciprocal agreements the state enforces with other states? And totally redoing employment law to eliminate the category of “employer” and employer privileges under the law? I pick those states because they are less populous and because they make a lot of their income from manipulating their corporation laws. Delaware was the original loose corporation state, but Nevada competes, and now all the states have loose corporation laws. Repeal them. There is no limit on liability or corporate identity that can sue from behind the veil of the corporation.

    The second biggest issue beyond breaking power of bosses is how to generate the revenue to create a public infrastructure and what the legal status of that infrastructure is, because “owned” is a bad conceptual base for a dictatorship of the proletariat.

    I hope you see the groups of practical problems that soon appear as this is rolled out and how a certain type of non-authoritarian leadership is needed to prevent the new strongest from re-establishing the old ways of doing things.

    This is a problem that the remaining “communist” countries still grapple with but not at a political theoretical level. New boss looks a lot like the old after a while.

    • Thank you, Tarheel Dem, for one of the most comprehensive and cogent analyses I’ve ever read. I will have to read it more than once to fully digest it.

      And thank you wd, for the links. I hate authoritarianism of any kind which is why I’m reluctant to give up completely on electoral politics, even though its value as one of many tools seems to have weakened to the point of uselessness.

    • A very interesting comment you write, td (if I may call you that. For me, you touch on a critical point. You write:
      The second biggest issue beyond breaking (the) power of bosses is how to generate the revenue to create a public infrastructure is because “owned” is a bad conceptual base for the dictatorship of the proletariat.
      I certainly don’t have an answer at my fingertips, but i’m glad you’ve posed the question.

      • I’ve been called worse. :) Thanks for grappling with it. What I think most folks miss is that so far the social relations were not transformed when elite or professional class revolutionaries led the revolution, which fundamentally was because they felt internationally marginalized as being from a backward country. And Marx’s successful “experiment” in the Paris Commune had internal weaknesses (in part, because Marx, Engels, and other enthusiasts were not in fact themselves proletarians).

        So, at this point, we haven’t seen anything other than replacing many bosses with a guy who has the illusion that he’s the only boss, even if on a rotating or temporary basis.

        What polity would workers design for themselves? Just look and see what happens in a crisis when the work depends on workers continuing to do it while the bosses are preoccupied elsewhere or have disappeared altogether. Imagine a hurricane in which the consequences are all of the ATMs are shut down and there is no law enforcement on the street. What tends to happen spontaneously? How long does it tend to last? What are the issues that disrupt it?

  4. The whale shark reminded me; did your perhaps paleolithically-modified megalodon shark’s tooth ever prove of any value, beyond sentimental?

    • no value except to me.bruce. i strung it on some gold thread w/ a great blue heron feather, and hung it on the wall next to ‘my half’ of the dining room table that serves as my desk. but yes, the whale shark reminded me of it, as well. it’s a fine tooth, it is, and imagining the size and power of the megaladon is thrilling. ;-)

  5. Well, I don’t know how to explain it any better than to say that voting exists and we have to deal with it one way or another, and I’m torn between giving up on voting altogether or voting strategically for certain candidates who seem to emit less of a stink than most of the others. (I told you my thinking was muddled). I would rather put my energy into working with other people to build a protest movement that won’t be cooped by one establishment front group or another than putting it into campaigning for that candidate or getting involved in party politics, but we’re faced with a choice with either don’t vote at all or vote strategically for candidates that are less than ideal. When I said I gave up on the ballot box I meant as a COMPLETE solution in and of itself, but I don’t know whether to give up on it altogether or view it as a single tool among many in trying to put together a complex puzzle known as positive change. I sat out the 2012 election altogether because I couldn’t vote for a war criminal or an aspiring war criminal. This year I voted for Bernie in the primary because for the first time since McGovern, the evils seem to be getting ever so lesser instead of vice-versa. And I voted Jill Stein in the general. Bernie and Tulsi, with all their warts, seem to be moving, if ever so slightly, in that direction. Yes, certain of her positions from what you quoted are odious, but if she’s no more than a cruise-missile Democrat, why are the real cruise-missile Democrats so rabidly excoriating her? At least she had the guts to actually go to Syria and meet with Assad, to question the ridiculous idea that Assad was behind the gas attack, address the issue of US Support for head-chopper jihadis, and protest at Standing Rock. But maybe she’s just a posturing sheepdog like Bernie turned out to be, however, have you considered the possibility that she’s just posturing on the Ukraine and other odious positions to ensure her political survival until she gets enough power to state her real views? I don’t know, electoral politics is a strange and confusing world to someone like me but I like to consider all possibilities before making up my mind.

    And her religion or belief in reincarnation plays no part in my process of deciding whether or not she’s worth my support if she runs for president, but the fact that the most evil, warmongering politicians of all stripes are attacking her instinctively makes me want to defend her.

    • i’m not sure how this ended up on the open menu instead of where we were discussing this issue, but i guess it gets a bit confusing. but sheesh, i’d reckoned you could tell that i was teasing about gabbard, reincarnation, and your support of her. but i will answer again your ‘what if’ about her pulling her punches’ until she gains real power,etc. yes, i can easily say bullshit to that trope. that’s exactly what so many did for obama: eleventy-dimensional chess and all that. nope, turned out he’d actually meant some of the stuff people excused him for. but i won’t even bother going back to see what she’d actually said about assad, tomahawking syria, and sarin. but plenty of equivocation was in it.

      sure you want to defend her, but as to why some of her fellow Ds attacked her (and pardon the old racialist term): she’d wandered off the Big D reservation, hadn’t she? and woot! now she’s a hero! her close friendship with thug modi also gives me the shivers…. but here’s more news on a press release she’d done at her website when i’d peeked in a couple weeks ago:

      from “At separate town hall meetings in Hilo on the Big Island on Tuesday, the senior US senator from the state, Brian Schatz, and US Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, both Democrats, sought to tamp down concerns sparked by the state legislature’s resolution and the lack of emergency planning, while taking an aggressive line against North Korea and criticizing Trump’s foreign policy from the right.

      When asked if Hawaiians should stock up on gas masks or build their own bomb shelters, Gabbard deflected the question, appealing to those in attendance to demand that the federal government construct a missile base in Hawaii to supplement Washington’s already extensive network of defensive and offensive missile bases.
      She declared, “I am urging colleagues, our Hawaii delegation, our leadership in the state of Hawaii, and urging all of you to help raise voices as we try to get urgent action to make sure that the appropriate capabilities are in place for the defense of Hawaii in particular. This isn’t something we can take lightly.”

      translation w/ her past legislative actions: ‘get kim jung-un before he gets us’.

      i dunno; i always turn in a ballot, but sometimes i leave all the candidate fields empty, given: f them all. last year i’d considered doing so for prez, but then…ajamu baraka joined stein’s ticket. he’s the real deal: a black prophetic gospel anti-capitalist. worked for me. but yeah, if you see the potential of lesser-evil voting as part of the total solution, i’ll have to honor that. but tulsi and bernie? sorry; no sale for me. ;-)

      on edit: while i know i should just stfu, i’d wondered gabbard and israel past big al’s pasted in quotes, as well as her political romance with (some say muslim genocidaire) modi and the BJP, and found a couple interesting things.

      ‘The Curious Islamophobic Politics of Dem Congressmember Tulsi Gabbard’, zaid jilani, alternet

      it shouldn’t have stunned me, but it did: she was one of the speakers at cufi (christians united for israel) in 2015, a clear signal that she is a dedicated zionist, or wants to be known as one.

      • Ok, I did miss your sarcasm, sorry about that. I’m not firing on all cylinders, the sleep deprivation is getting exponentially worse each day and I’m a little on edge. I pulled a little bit of an Al Pacino in court today in a case involving child sex and everyone treating it as ho-hum, even the guardian ad litem. I tend to go ballistic with the issue of sex between eight-year-olds and responsible adults tolerating, if not encouraging it.

        And I wonder if you understand I’ve been posing all of this about Tulsi as lesser-evilism worth voting for or voting in general, my mind is not made up at all, I was just seeking the opinions of others. Thank you for yours, as well as the links, you’ve pretty much answered my question about Tulsi. Too bad. I guess a lot of us are still hungering and thirsting for a hero or heroine, even though we know intellectually that’s not the right approach. We need to do it ourselves. Donovan’s song “Mongoose” comes to mind….If I knew how I would link to it….Wish Ellspeth was here right now.

        Please excuse the bombast….Not directed towards anyone but the system and the no-REM-Sleep Demon…

        Just out of curiosity, what is your opinion of Dennis Kucinich and Cynthia McKinney? Or Mike Gravel?

        • i get your reasoning on going ‘pacino’; hope it made a big difference in the outcome of the trial. so you do other sorts of law besides mortgage relief?

          no heroes for me, most especially from the political class. i wrote up a ‘pffft, bernies a miltarist, too’ post back in the day, and one commenter was irked that i’d be attacking him from the left, lol. yeppers, i did. see, by now it matters so little who’ elected prez unless we change the entire system. i’d almost brought you my 2 part questions concerning herr hair’s election opened spaces for an anti-capitalist revolution, but in the end, it didn’t seem easy to promote what i saw as the best ideas from (esp) part II.

          sorry about your sleeplessness; it happens to me, too, although swallowing dried cbd-high cannabis capsules may be helping, hard to tell yet.

          but yeah, you’ mentioned denis a veep, but remember that he sold out single payer during a trip with obomba on airforce 1. (i loved him since refusing to privatize cleveland muni power, and suggesting ‘a cabinet level peace dept.?). he must have have received the equivalent offer of a one-way ticket to the grounds w/o a parachute. mckinney’s politics and activism are lovely, but w/ so much baggage that she likely couldn’t be elected to any office, anywhere in the current rabid milieu. same for gravel, and boy, howdy, is he aces in my book!

          i’ll go fetch the riki-tiki, however ya spell it. but all ya do is get on youtube, boot up the video, grab the url, and paste it in. tweets usually embed too, but the ‘good thing we’re different; at least we’re not assholes’ one i tried to embed on the other thread dinnae take; dunno why.

          the big meeting at the WH: yeah, it might just be more show to how ‘how bloody serious’ the usa takes the sitch, but one never knows, does one? are they trying even harder to provoke a response from that dude?

  6. this news just came in via the popular resistance newsletter, but they’d offered no links. but here it is, and speculation is, and will run wild about being a preamble to striking north korea:

    “President Donald Trump has reportedly summoned the entire U.S. Senate to the White House on Wednesday for a rare briefing on the situation in North Korea. The briefing will center on the Trump administration’s planned response to North Korea’s nuclear program and Kim Jung Un’s threats to launch attacks on the U.S. and its Asian allies.

    According to Reuters, the Trump administration sent a notice to Capitol Hill, summoning all 100 U.S. Senators to the White House for a meeting on Wednesday where they will be briefed by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Secretary of Defense James Mattis on the situation in the Korean Peninsula. Other top administration officials who will brief the senators at the meeting include Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Joseph Dunford, according to Reuters.
    The briefing, which was originally scheduled to take place in the Senate, is intended to bring the senators up to date on the administration’s planned response to North Korea’s nuclear program, which the U.S. views as a threat to its national security.” the rest is here.

    zeese and flowers offer a handy-dandy way to email your senators: tell him no, you don’t!

    • Oh greeeeeaaaaat! I had hoped the fleet going the opposite direction would make the idea of attack just an “alternative fact”

  7. Some other interest facts for other reporting.

    The State Department was not aware that Tillerson was doing a briefing.

    Mitch McConnell is the one who decided on behalf of the Senate to do the briefing in the Executive Office Building auditorium instead of the Senate’s secure briefing room. No one is sure about the capabilities of that auditorium as far as security and the set-up of a situation room are concerned.

    Fleets show the flag. Pat Lang’s anticipation for the end of the month was that there would be three carrier groups in the area. No one knows whether there is actual movement because no one knows how embargoed the media are on this story.

    The set-up sure looks like a captive audience situation and a fait accompli. But it could be a dazzling “surprise move” that unfolds more “negotiations”. Or it could be a matter of requiring an authorization of use of military force before the Senators are allowed to leave the venue. It is not regular operating procedures at all.

    My worse-case is that the set-up of the auditorium is of a full-Senate situation room for them to watch exactly what he does in real-time and what the US military does in real-time and allows the Senators advising and implies their unanimous consent. At least Xi Jinping got to eat dinner in peace before he found out what Trump had done in Syria.

    Well, we won’t have long to wait. I’m not sure what power Senators will have over this policy. Trump is threatening to shut down the government.

    • ‘shut down the G’ for what? i’d seen a blurb about funding for his great wall of mexico, but then one saying he’d give it up for now.

      i’d seen those items, save for that ‘T ha offered the WH to mcconnell, mcCreepy accepted. several sources have this phrasing:

      “Officials said the briefing would take place in the auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, which can be adapted for such an event. oy, and veh. your worst case is frightening, but it would be so like him, and now that clinton, O, have already set a precedent….

      but stuff like this keeps being ‘reported’:

      “North Korea’s state-run newspaper the Rodong Sinmun declared the country’s armed forces were ready to show their strength by sinking the carrier “with a single strike”. FP by translations of op-eds?

      telesur: “President Trump had a lunch meeting with 15 ambassadors from U.N. security member states on Monday, including Russia and China. Trump said the U.N. Security Council must be prepared to impose new sanctions on North Korea.”

      guardian on trumpista lunch w/ un sec. council members *and some members of the house and senate!!! (exclamation points nikki haley on twitter*: “Reuters reports that tougher sanctions could include an oil embargo, banning North Korea’s airlines, intercepting cargo ships, and punishing banks doing business with Pyongyang.
      “This is a real threat to the world, whether we want to talk about it or not. North Korea is a big world problem and it’s a problem that we have to finally solve,” Trump said at the meeting. “People put blindfolds on for decades and now it’s time to solve the problem

      but the administration just *might be* going full-tilt bombastic a la (UK defense minister) ““In the most extreme circumstances we have made it very clear that you can’t rule out the use of nuclear weapons as a first strike,” Fallon told the BBC’s Today program.

      When asked in what circumstances, he replied: “They are better not specified or described, which would only give comfort to our enemies and make the deterrent less credible.
      “The whole point about the deterrent is that you have got to leave uncertainty in the mind of anyone who might be thinking of using weapons against this country.”
      The prime minister’s official spokesperson later added there was “no reason to disagree with what the defense secretary said.”

      i’ve been watching state dept on twitter a bit; Heather Nauert (former ‘fox and friends’ news anchor) 47, looks 22, will be the new state dept. spox.

      wow,is haley an oaf.

  8. What has Mz. Nikki done now? She knows what the principals want done and tries to do that in the most ingratiatingly Southern style.

    There are two grandiose possibilities:
    1. Xi Jinping delivers to Trump the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula that China has always wanted in return for —hmmm — the denuclearization of the the seas of northeast Asia (which is something that the US likely is reluctant – possible even with Trump – to do)

    2. The US executes an Operation Opera on North Korea’s nuclear and missile production capabilities while China stands by seemingly helpless.

    The unknown:
    Can the US turn in a flawless performance that nails North Korean power before it can start retaliation against South Korea? Past performance is not encouraging.

    Does China have a diplomatic and/or military strategy for returning North Korea to tributary status? (Listen, Kim Jon Un, you depend on the Chinese nuclear umbrella henceforward.) This is not personal; the North Korean military have to save face somehow in becoming servants of an empire again.

    I don’t see it working any way but a big huge mess. Even if there is little boom-boom that goes down.

    • lol. once again i’d read your comment via email, as ever just whizzing thru it/them, and had seen: waz miz nikki done. etc.. so, thinking you couldn’t hear her breathless cheerleading, i facsimilated her comments. well, since i went to the bother… ;-)

      “lindsey graham, ben cardin were here, and boy, did we have a free-wheeling session!! exciting for me! we need them to know that herr T is about action! that reform is our thang, as in that resolutions need to mean something, they know he’s seriously engaged in FP, and now they’re in w/ general mcmaster, focusing on n korea and isis (tut-tut, nikkkki: IS!)

      now i hadn’t clicked in, but earlier i’d seen the grand scheme of militarizing to protect south sudan from famine. where the oil is (chinese big investors there), of course, and climate change drought is sincerely causing ungawdly hunger. but likely this is all about the civil war, right?

      Ambassador @nikkihaley at today’s #UNSC briefing on #SouthSudan: “I call on this Security Council to act.” Read more→

      i swear i’d seen ben cardin say: why won’t drpk sit down and talk? ay yi yi: yes, why haven’t us admins for decades sat down and talked about the original framework?

      but some thoughts there, thd. do you mean china claiming helplessness and w/ a wider agenda to return nk to tributary status? oh, those deep thinker, long gamer orientalists… is this “the denuclearization of the the seas of northeast Asia” about the earlier framework/promises between japan and north korea 2012-ish?

      well, i guess we may see what’s afoot. not quite there yet, but japanese destroyers, the carl vinson strike group, south korea performing ‘everyday’ drills, and the u.s. nuclear submarine Michigan somebody…docked nearby. nah, nothing could go wrong…could it? could it all be more surreal?

  9. not connected to ‘tensions’ over NK, we swear!

  10. The more of that type of “catapulting the propaganda”, as W used to say, the more it looks like a nothingburger to get the media off scoring the accomplishments of the first 100 days, which seems limited to deportations.

    • you may be exactly right, and i’ve seen a few others posit the same. but i’m gonna stick up a new thread on the increasing brinkmanship, the big WH mtn. comes to mohamed meeting. i’d thought to paste in your ‘worst case scenario’ comment. that okay?

      • I just got great news! My apnea machine is finally fixed and was shipped to my house today! No more nights of oxygen-deprived “sleep.”

  11. jew for jeebus
    “A German newspaper says Woodrow Wilson’s reported support for a Jewish state in Palestine (which if true I’ve missed) is “an English war aim against Turkey,” aimed at creating a land bridge between the British territories of Egypt and India.”
    this guy does a review of articles from the NYT archives from exactly 100 years ago today every day. w/your earlier post on Israel, I tho’t this comment was quite interesting. imperialist intrigue re jewish Palestine goes back a long ways.

    • i might find it intriguing…if i could grasp it, jew for jeebus. whose post on israel (she asked dunce-like)?

    • your post on israel from a bit back. this blogger reports on what’s on the NYT archive pages of its own front page from exactly 100 years ago.

      I suppose it’s not newz to everyone that British interest in Palestine was not from love of the wandering Joos.

      • well i sure hadn’t known about the land bridge, myself. thanks, though, and sorry to be a dolt. i just have a hegg-ache that makes my eye wince, and just can’t shake it. yeah, excuses, excuses… ;-)

  12. I really want to savor this news without feeling “Yes, but. . .” and my hope is that a crumb of sanity is beginning to penetrate the impenetrable:

    • zo…i shouldn’t offer a “yes but”? even to lampoon st. bernie about it…again? i was just lampooning him and brother cornell west to doug colwell on another thread. but bless john conyers.

  13. I’m gonna make fun of tarzie just for the hell of it:

    I wonder if “call of the wild” could be considered animal exploitation? how dare an author appropriate the consciousness of a dog? it’s like casting humanity’s demons into the Gadarene swine. the dog comes to love his labor like a happy proletarian cur should.

    and what about Papageno the bird catcher in the Magic Flute? it’s not something one should sing about. and get those damn feathers off! of course he now wants to catch a Papagena. too.

    • lol. i looked back at that thread and saw someone mouthing close to “and avoid wool and leather products…when feasible”. i’m sure the indigenous of the planet are planning on going vegan in order to stop animal exploitation to create a better world any day now. too bad they’re such…conformist he-men. and he-women.

      • wouldn’t be a bad thing in the long run. we could all use hemp I guess. how to get there from here….

        of course I was j/k but it’s like saying reading huck finn causes racism. if we want to protect animals, will we need to protect ourselves from even being aware that previous ages loved cow flesh? thoughtcrime leading to crime crime and all that…or we could put big warning labels on books, w/tips from tipper gore how to do that, saying things like: No actual cows were hurt in the writing of the Jungle. but such knowledge may in the end be too corrupting.

        is it worse to abuse the cows or the women? can’t they make their points about exploitation & the idiocy of consumerism or whatever w/o sullying my pristine vegan mind w/all that exposed flesh?

        • oh, my; that was a sick watch. and they take off their disguises and walk away in suits w/ briefcases. guess there’s an over-arching theme there, although it may take knowing prodigy to know for certain.

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