Do You Hear What I Hear?

In the Middle of All the Political News This week, I hear a Christmas Carol in My Head

 

The last few days have been dizzying in the speed and complexity of revelations about the Trump administration. To say anything less would be the Mother of All Understatements. It is coming fast and furious now, from all directions. More – much more – to follow, and at an increasing pace, I would wager.

I was trying to sort through the latest batch of all this a couple of days ago. Suddenly, in the back of my head (kind of an echo chamber effect – apparently,

This is What Betrayal Looks Like on a Grand Scale

The Kurds Suffered Over 11,000 deaths in Our Shared Fight against ISIS.                    Trump Thrashed That Sacrifice as an Afterthought

 

Let’s be clear about two things up front. First, the Kurds fought hard – are still fighting – for their own, valid reasons. They were not just helping us. Second, there are ties between the Syrian Kurds and the PKK, a shadowy group of Turkish Kurds fairly described often as Marxist terrorist. All of that is true. None of it justifies what Trump has done.

Trump’s precipitous decision (Whim? Reaction?

Impeachment: Familiar Ground, New Territory, and the Pull of History

Many Crossroads are Ahead. Oh, Yeah- and Elections are Next Year

 

Well, quite the week last week, wasn’t it? Impeachment went from a remote possibility with vague parameters to a fast-moving train. Looking around us now, we see interesting landmarks on our journey.

Two of these are strangely familiar.

One, it seemed that the move to impeach was stuck well short of enough votes to move forward. What happened? Seven House freshmen, all with military and national security service backgrounds, stood up and called for impeachment. Five of them are from tough,

With Friends Like Us, Who Needs Enemies?

 

Let’s review a few of the specifics.

EUROPE

  • President Trump has trash talked NATO from the beginning. The only time NATO activated its “attack on one is an attack on all” clause was when we are attacked on 9/11. Our allies responded, including with many deployments to Afghanistan at our request. Now our allies wonder if we would answer when called. Border states in Eastern Europe certainly wonder. So too the Russians. We are now the weak link in NATO. That was unthinkable for over 50 years.
  • Trump more than once tried to insert himself into the British elections.

The Iran Almost-Strike – Good News, Bad News, Non-News

 

This Story is a Many-Layered Cautionary Tale

This past week was, to put it mildly, quite the week for the Trump administration and foreign affairs. It is, in all candor, difficult to sort out. Let’s take a look at what we are hearing and see what we can make of it all.

First, it appears that a military strike was decided upon, then cancelled at the last minute. The Administration says it was cancelled because the president learned at the last moment that the strike would result in about 150 casualties. That seemed to him to be excessive as a retaliation for shooting down a drone.

Are We Actually THAT Shortsighted and Selfish?

Our choices for transportation don’t say much for us

American automotive firms are pretty much getting out of the car business. They are going almost exclusively to trucks and SUVs. They are leaving the automobile market to foreign companies.

One cannot blame them for this – they are going where the market tells them. You and I pretty much determine what General Motors, et al manufacture.

People have gone in this direction on a large scale because gasoline is a bit cheaper these days. Gas is not costly; so, gas mileage is not much of a factor for many of us anymore.

YOU are in Cybersecurity Danger – From FOUR Directions – Part I

The Risks are Far Worse Than Most of Us Think. But There is Hope

This is the first part of a two-part post. Today’s blog lays out the primary dangers we face individually and as a country. Part II looks at ways out of this mess.

We are all aware that a lot seems to be amiss in the world of cybersecurity. What may have gotten lost for some of us is how deep and wide the threats run. There is an overarching framework that makes this all exceptionally dangerous. The attacks come from four different threats,

Russia and China Smell Weakness. This Will Not End Well.

 

Key points in our history that came upon us this week – and looming conflict.

Before reviewing armed conflict, a few notes on the news of recent days.

Michael Cohen– In the future we will look back on last week as key. We will note this was when fate began turning on Donald Trump with terminal velocity. An unconscionable number of Republicans have excused him on a host of issues for far too long. As Russian ties come into focus, such support will become untenable. Trump is becoming more isolated and less powerful within his own party.

Veterans Day Reflections: Service and Sacrifice; Gratitude and Community

 

Veterans Day  provides opportunities to ponder big issues

Today we celebrate Veterans Day, at a time of national division.  We do so when the president flew half way around the world to commemorate the end of World War I. He then chose to sit out the first ceremony. Because it was raining.

We could use a little reflection on what Veterans Day means. Herewith, my take on it.

Service: We live in a society with oddly mixed motivations. Volunteerism is, in many places and for many causes, at near record levels.

History Is About To Come Calling

checkmate-1511866_1920checkmate-1511866_1920

Events are About to Catch Up with Trump and Company. History will Not be Kind.

In a sense, many of us alive today have been here before. There came a time in Watergate that the weight of evidence and history would no longer be denied. It was an amazing thing to observe. Two things stood out in particular.

One, when the time came, a handful of people made a difference. In the right place and with the right amount of authority, they stood up and did the right thing.