One of the problems with writing is that you never seem to take time off. I may be doing whatever when suddenly a thought comes to mind and I grab my iPhone to make a note. The same happens (somewhat by design) as I read. Most of those tidbits, while important, are not alone the fodder for an article. Today I want to somewhat clean out the notes section of my phone, give you somethings to think about and in at least one instance probably make you aware of something for the first time. In no particular order let’s explore.
As I write this the nation is in the midst of a series of tributes to the late President George HW Bush. My fear of the evil that could come from the current lame duck session is well known. Bush 41’s final contribution to the nation is that he effectively shortened the session.
With John McCain’s memorials still fresh in our minds America is about to do pretty much a carbon copy for Bush. While Donald Trump finally achieved the milestone of having his obituary written while he is still alive I don’t think we’ll be seeing a lot of tributes when he passes.
The Base Closure and Realignment Commission is scheduled to meet in 2019. Let’s see if it even convenes let alone issues any closing or consolidation recommendations.
As if to prove that lying isn’t easy the White House issued new rules for press briefings: No follow-up questions. So if Sarah Huckabee-Sanders is able to utter a non-answer answer she can now just move on to the next question that she will answer with a lie. Interesting fact: November’s first press briefing (in previous administrations they were called called daily press briefings) was held on Tuesday the 27th.
Here is a word for you to remember: Kaliningrad. It is a sovereign part of Russia that is not contiguous with the rest of the country. It has access to the Baltic Sea but otherwise is surrounded by Poland and Lithuania, both of whom are NATO members. It is less than 100 square miles in area and has a population of a bit over 400,000 over 85% of who are ethnically Russian. Can you see this becoming a hot spot? I can. Think Ukraine.
I’ve written this one before but I still think I bears keeping in mind: Deep Throat was an anonymous source.
We’ve talked about the 25th Amendment before and although I doubt it will be it still could be how the Trump presidency ends. However it was not designed for this type of situation. It was designed for a president who enters the office with the ability to do the job and somewhere during their presidency losses that ability. Trump never had the ability to do the job in the first place.
The adage “Follow the money” appears more germane every day as Russiagate unfolds. Here is something else to keep in mind; money laundering, especially of the international variety, almost always includes tax evasion. We already saw this in the Manafort trial.
With his foreign policy and emoluments action Trump has really stretched the old adage about charity beginning at home to a new extreme.
I’ll leave you with a scary thought that appears to be accurate. Journalist and author Tim O’Brian (currently of Bloomberg) wrote a book about Trump entitled Trump Nation: The Art of Being the Donald, in which he claimed that Trump wasn’t a billionaire. Predictably, Trump sued but O’Brian won in court. The bottom line is that O’Brian has studied Trump for years and knows him well. Here is his succinct observation of the current occupant of the White House: “He’s happy as long as he is the center of attention. He doesn’t care about the country.”
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