Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The Problem with Afghanistan is...

we went in all those years ago in pursuit of a rational-realist agenda that mostly revolved around "Getting Bin Laden" and smashing up his enablers in the Taliban.  Well, we blew the Taliban to hell (as much as we could find anyway) and sent Bin Laden to sleep with the fishes but all these years later we are still tied down in Afghanistan out of very real fears that a departure will only bring back the same old crowd of barbaric wowsers to power.
Somewhere along the line we crossed over the "fact-value nexus' and made ourselves responsible for delivering The Afghans from the clutches of a new class of oppressors....some of this comes from guilt some of it from overweaning ambition. But all the same it's gotten tangled together to create a perfect storm of procrastination, it's NEVER the right time to exit Afghanistan from a policy perspective.
The Kabul Government is never gonna be strong enough, or have enough popular support to perpetuate itself, four thousand more troops and who knows how many money grubbing contractors can't really change that.
We could stay thirty more years in Afghanistan and never get the right conditions to terminate that war, maybe we should start planning a right and proper "declare victory and get out" exit.
I hate to pull a "Stephen Kinzer" like this, but this comes from a sure knowledge that the manpower and resources dedicated to Afghanitan are gonna be needed elsewhere sooner or later....

Just Sayin'

I doubt any of this will come to pass under the present admin, but we should at least start the necessary logistical and diplomatic planning....

Monday, August 21, 2017

Nice work this weekend

The anti alt right march went off well...fewer arrests than at a Patriots Victory Parade...granted the president's tweets were ignorant & churlish but that is how he reacts to things that scare him....remember that going forward.
And I suppose while we are at it that Charlie Baker will get a pass for what amounted to clapping Mayor Walsh on the back lasty week and offering him nothing more than a hearty "Good Luck".

Friday, August 18, 2017

As for Robert E. Lee

that drawing Christ-Like Man on Horseback can Cordially Kill My Fat Irish Ass.  He all but looked Abraham Lincoln in the eye and declined to command the Union Armies in 1861 in their mission to put down the Confederate Rebellion. He blubbered something about "Honor" and "Conscience" and then rode off to Richmond and the Command of the Army of Northern Virginia, CSA conveniently forgotten that long ago oath he took to "Defend the US Constitution".
Let me also point out that almost the entire Confederate Leadership DIED IN BED after the Civil War was lost for the South...with malice towards none indeed mah friends.
The fact that there are statues erected to the memory of Robert E. Goddamned Lee is nothing but proof positive that the USA is the most generous forgiving nation on Earth....frankly they can melt the lot down and sell it for scrap as far as I am concerned.
Don't give me that "Washington & Jefferson owned Slaves, Woodrow Wilson was a negrophobe etc etc " shit either. Washington started this nation and defended it against all comer whatever his flaws, Jefferson loved this country so much he trebled it's size, neither man was ever a disunionist in act or word.
As for Woodrow Wilson, his predecessors and successors were equally negrophobic....no traitors among them at all though...

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Looks like the Alt Right's Rally is a GO This Saturday

On the Common, the kid who took out the permits though, sounds like a passive aggressive little dupe quite frankly.  And I reiterate that the Governor is well within his rights to call out the National Guard, one to protect the citizenry from a very obvious threat of political violence and unrest and secondly to protect a variety of monuments & statues on the Common that are accutely vulnerable to counter vandalism.
But this is Charlie Baker after all, you can wait on real leadership from him until senility makes it all a moot point.
As for Statues of Robert E. Lee...I got short shrift indeed for that whole phenom, Lee looked Lincoln in the eye back in 1861 and declined to lead the Union Armies against the confederate rebellion...the fact we didn't hang him (a commissioned officer in the US Army sworn to defend the US Constitution BTW) after the war and that we've tolerated statues to his bony ass for a hundred plus years is PROOF that this nation is built on charity & tolerance!
But then these mooks down in Virginia didn't show up to venerate Lee's alleged military genius it was to affirm symbolically solidarity with apartheid...hence the guns and violence as well, since you can't successfully segregate sans violence.
I would also point out to Mayor Walsh & Governor Baker (not that they read this dire political remnant) that the Streets of Berlin fell to the Nazis in 1930 because the Government ceased prosecuting and imprisoning NSDAP street thugs, it was a failure of law enforcement, mainstream conservatives panicked, started negotiating with Hitler and the heat came off the Brownshirts as a consequence. Thus then Berlin Gauleiter Josef Goebbels could rack up a victory that was largely due to political cowardice, until the government caved, the Nazis were making little progress in the Capital.
And if indeed, a Synagogue in Charlottesville was menaced by armed Nazis last Saturday, then I can safely save these bastards have a taste for blood now, and thus sterner measures must be taken next time...it'll save us all trouble later on believe me.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

I wanna take a moment admidst the ongoing Crisis of the Republic


To congratulate CongressPerson Tsongas on her retirement from the US House...71 is old enough I think to stop and smell the roses I think, especially in these perilous times.  I recall with much fondess my "political debut" as lowly volunteer on her Late Husband's Presidential Campaign, would to God I had done ten times as much for him, win or lose.
I suspect this is a congressional race that Charlie Baker and the GOP will contest, but you can never ever tell with that guy...shifty ain't the word for him....

Monday, August 14, 2017

When in the History of the Far Right in the USA

Have the Klan and the Nazis EVER shown up for a demonstration without the intent to incite or initiate violence?
Thats the main lesson from Charlottesville...those guy show up and riots follow they are good at that sort of thing.
Allegeldy a similar "demonstration" is planned on Boston Common for the 19th, if I was Charlie Baker I'd call out the National Guard, but this is Governor Spreadsheets leadership in the face of far right provocation isn't his strong suit.
Some strong leadership now, might prevent violence later, just remember Dr. Goebbels' streetfighters made little progress in Berlin until the national and city leadership essentially fell for the Nazi Bluff and started negotiating with the NSDAP.

Friday, August 11, 2017

What a Minute...

A scant ten months ago at the third presidential debate, didn't Donald Trump groan into the camera "Our Nuclear....It's the Worst!!"  What happened to our strategic forces since then to give the president the confidence to promise North Korea "Fire and Fury"?
:)

All snark aside the modalities behind this crisis are relatively simple, Kim wants keep his Plantation Overseer Hold on North Korea, he saw what happened to East Germany when the Socialist Bloc lost interest in the Cold War and wishes to avoid the same fate...chiefly because Komrade Kim is such sketchy little freak he's have few flight & asylum options. To do that he needs nukes, "nukes keep out troops" is his mantra. Its not lost on him that Israel's minimal nuclear arsenal has an outsized affect deterring Arab Agression against the Jewish State in Middle East.
The USA on the other hand, is desperately trying to shore up a nuclear non proliferation regime in the region sans much help from Moscow or Peking, NK's acquisition of nukes compromises our whole "active forward defense" posture in Asia & creates fear among our own alliance structure...it may even contribute to a pro Peking swing among said allies...who can say? Then again our president is an amateur who may think playing nuclear chicken with a vastly underestimated "pipsqueak Asian Despot" pushes Robert Mueller off the front pages which may well be Trump's sole goal here.
Well as Adlai Stevenson once observed "We are about to discover if this magnificent civilization of ours can create the statesmen necessary to prevent it from being blown sky-high".