There are a lot of things that have piled up in my mind and notes. I thought today might be a good day to unload. Let’s explore.
President Trump traveled to Europe to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Armistice that ceased the hostilities of World War I. It seems that Trump is afraid of the rain. He begged off on attending one event specifically because of the rain. Said rain did not deter a plethora of other participants. He was also conspicuous by his absence when almost every world leader of consequence strolled down the street together in a display of unity. The stated reason for his absence from his apologists was security concerns. Many of the other world leaders were under umbrellas during their walk. For a guy who considers golf while riding a golf cart exercise I guess a leisurely stroll in a mist might tax his heart a bit too much.
If the kingdom of heaven exists I may have a delay in admission because I tend to gloat at other’s electoral losses. Last Tuesday was no exception. One loss that brought joy to my heart was that of Rowen (Kentucky) County Clerk Kim Davis; she of the refusal to issue a marriage license to a same-sex couple fame. Where were all her high profile Republican friends? During the 2016 campaign Mike Huckabee out maneuvered Ted Cruz and Chris Christie to be on stage with her when she was released from jail. I guess she turned out to be nothing more than a useful idiot for them. Unlike them, at least she was useful.
Last week Turkish President Recep Erdogan announced that he had given audio recordings of the killing of Jamal Khashoggi to American, Saudi, French, German and British intelligence agencies. How long will it take before the content of the tapes if not the actual recordings leak?
Staying in the Middle East for a moment, I find it interesting that neither Turkey nor Saudi Arabia has an ambassador from America. This cannot be blamed on Democratic obstruction in the Senate (which basically doesn’t exist anyway). The Trump administration has never nominated anyone to fill either post. You can’t obstruct a non-existent nominee. Remember Saudi Arabia was the destination of Trump’s first foreign trip as President. Was that trip about foreign affairs or a quest for family financing on the taxpayer’s dime?
I can’t help but think of the late Tim Russert on Election Night 2000 holding up a whiteboard on which he had written, “Florida, Florida, Florida”. Today we are in the midst of a triple recount there (Governor, U.S. Senate and Agriculture Commissioner). A word to hopeful progressives around the country: it is extremely rare for a recount to change the outcome of an election. Resources would be better directed toward voter turnout and post-election to making certain that every vote is actually tallied.
Going further back in history Jerry Lewis’ 1963 movie, The Nutty Professor came to mind as I watched former President Barack Obama and Trump on the stump in the final days of the 2018 campaign. Obama was a college professor (University of Chicago Law) and still in many ways sounds like one. Trump just sounded plain nuts.
An item that hardly made the news is that last week Federal Judge Brian Morris ruled that the Trump administration did not sufficiently justify their decision to allow the Keystone XL pipeline to proceed. The administration may win on appeal but for now all work should cease. The best case scenario for the Trump administration is that this is another case of their sloppiness and ignorance coming back to bite them.
In a rare for me moment of non-partisanship I saw an alarming statistic the other night. The biggest problem in contemporary American politics is the influence of money. Based on preliminary numbers 2018 was no exception. In 89.8% of the House races and 83.9% of the Senate races the candidate with more money behind them won. I can certainly question both the methodology and timing of the study considering that several races are unresolved but those numbers aren’t going to be significantly changed.
As Russiagate progresses Trump’s plausible deniability is sounding less and less plausible. Could we just start calling him Felonious Trump?
Wednesday, lost in all the post-election analysis, is the fact that the State Department announced the last minute cancellation of a scheduled meeting between Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his North Korean counterparts. Juxtapose this with the facts that Trump is planning a second summit with Kim Jung-un and that intelligence agencies are detecting increased North Korean missile capacity building. The art of the deal is looking more like the coming of a second fleecing. Is there any world leader who can’t outsmart Trump?
I’ll leave you with a final warning: If you happen to go to Flint, Michigan don’t drink the water. The Republicans made it hazardous to your health and refused to rectify their deeds.
There was more but it’s the first work day after a holiday and you are busy.
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