Undermining America.

IMG_20170516_122955Trump is hell bent on destroying America.

What could be worse than his pulling out of the Paris Accords.  First of all they weren’t binding but set goals.  Perhaps Trump did not comprehend that.  Whatever he did or did not know about the agreement is not the point nor is whether the agreement good or bad.

What is the absolutely worst thing is that it was the United States which fought tooth and nail to bring all the countries of the world together to reach this agreement.  We said here is the road to follow if we want to protect our planet. By hook or by crook, by twisting arms or handing out goodies, we did bring all of them along and they followed because we persuaded them this was the right thing to do.

Many of the leaders of these countries went along at great risk to themselves. And their reward for doing this was to see the USA cut and run. What does that tell the leaders of these countries about following America’s leadership

Plain and simple it suggests to any country which does think of following the USA’s lead better rethink that decision. So where is the leadership to come from now that the commitment of the USA is so shaky?

Stepping down as leader leaves the door open for other nations to move ahead of the USA. Most likely China will step into the vacant spot.  Think of how long we have been the leading nation. Since WWI or definitely WWII. Why would we want to give it up as we have done? Why have we become a nation whose word is no longer trusted?

So Making America Great Again is withdrawing us to a time before WWII. When before that were we so great.  After WWII in the Fifties we powered up as a nation becoming great; some say Reagan made us great but Reagan did it in a leadership role as every American president has done since FDR.

So we step back. We rely on coal while rest of world scrambles away from it. We stick with our old technology while other nations power ahead with the latest developments. We cut regulations here while other nations thrive under their more restrictive ones.

It is sad when we hear that Trump figured a benefit from getting out of the Accord was to show the European leaders and the Pope they could not pressure him. As is his won’t he lacked the courage to tell them to their face he was planning to exit. But imagine basing a decision like this on a spiteful reason and thinking that a benefit.

It goes back to character. He cannot deal with equals. Democratically elected leaders don’t bow down to him which offends him. They can get along quite well without him. Dictators seeking favors act like he is a big deal playing to his ego. Those are his people.

His only achievements to date is to empower dictators while lessening our country’s standing in the world. At home his achievement is to undo what Obama put in place without substituting anything for it.  Oh, yes, he also taints America with his petty tweets showing his obsession with himself.

Things will get worse. All I’ve predicted has come true.  We are now approaching a hot and dangerous summer with a puerile cowardly man in charge.

70 thoughts on “Undermining America.

  1. President Obama never took the largely symbolic Paris Agreement before Congress, as the Constitution require if it’s to be a Treaty. Why?

    The backbone of the Paris agreement is the global target of keeping global average temperatures from rising 2°C (compared to temperatures pre-industrial revolution) by the end of the century.

    195 countries have agreed to it. But there’s also no defined punishment for breaking it.

    Part of the Paris Agreement requires the US to send at least $100 billion a year in carbon-reduction aid to the poorer countries by 2020

    No or reduced use of fossil fuels such as coal and oil will mean more nuclear power. Currently, there are 60 reactors under construction: 20 in China, 11 in India, 4 in the US, 4 in the UAE, one in Jordan. And Iran.

    The US leaving doesn’t end everything; the “largely symbolic” Agreement will continue without the US. China, Japan and South Korea will continue building new coal mines in Africa.

    And I still think it will be years, if ever, yet before P-town and Scituate are under the ocean, despite Trump.

    1. Why didn’t he take it before Congress? When you have idiots like Congressman James Inhofe holding a snowball on the House floor, claiming climate change is fake, what would be the point? All bought and paid for by big fossil fuel and the Koch brothers. Profit over Plant. Disgusting.

  2. Matt:

    The hysterical hyperbole amazes. Your personal attacks against Trump are over the top, to put it kindly.

    You write: “All I’ve predicted has come true.” You forget you predicted a decade of Hillary.

    You ask, “What could be worse than his pulling out of the Paris Accords?” How about starting a nuclear war with Russia or China? How about staying in the Paris Accords?

    You conceptualize the issue as Trump breaking promises. Rather, it was Obama making naïve promises he shouldn’t have and couldn’t keep. Obama promised to reduce greenhouse emissions in the US by 26-28% by 2025; Obama promised $100 billion in cash to other countries by 2020; some say Obama sold out the US on the altar of climate change. Obama gave us a near $20 trillion debt (almost doubling the debt in 8 years); left us with huge trade deficits with China and the European Union, and was promising to give away more.

    It’s good the world will address greenhouse gas emissions. The US will continue to reduce toxic emissions. The Paris Agreement unfairly strapped the US with unrealistic goals.

    Remember, some astute writers for the Wall Street Journal urged reconsideration and rejection of the Paris CC Agenda. See: WSJ “Remake the Paris Climate Deal to Promote American Energy (May 2017)” WSJ warned against “Chinese predation” and “European unrealism.”

    2. Moreover, the US leads the world in reducing greenhouse gases and will continue to do so. See the Forbes article:
    https://www.forbes.com/sites/rrapier/2016/06/19/the-u-s-leads-all-countries-in-lowering-carbon-dioxide-emissions/#5f48bad85f48
    “For the most recent 10-year period, U.S. emissions declined by 622 million tons. This represents a 10% decline in carbon dioxide emissions over that time period. Once more, the UK was in 2nd place for this time period with a decline of 139 million tons (down 24% over the decade). China led all countries with an increase of 3.1 billion tons, which represented a 51% increase in China’s carbon dioxide emissions over the past decade. India was again in 2nd place with a gain of 1.0 billion tons, but its growth rate for emissions was higher at 83% for the decade.”

    3. The Paris CC Accord committed China to doing Nothing by 2030.

    Here’s the True Story on the China “Pledge”:
    From the Daily Caller:
    “Did any of them actually look at what China pledged to do?
    China’s pledged to “peak” greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. What’s implied here is that China will increase emissions in absolute terms during that time.
    China basically promised to follow its already expected development track, where emissions are expected to level off between 2025 and 2030.
    But China said they would reduce emissions per unit of economic output 60 to 65 percent below 2005 levels by 2030, right?
    Yes, but China is only promising to continue an economic trend that’s been occurring since they’ve industrialized.
    China had already cut emissions per unit of output nearly 34 percent below 2005 levels before Paris went into effect in 2016. What’s interesting is its output pledge is only half the rate of reductions in recent years.
    China can reduce its emissions per unit of output while increasing overall emissions — that’s what matters in terms of global warming. It’s almost like they are gaming the whole Paris agreement.”

    China gamed the whole Paris agreement!

    Conclusion: We can still improve environmental quality without depressing our economy. We’ve been doing so since Nixon’s Congress created the EPA in the early 1970s.

  3. President Trump showed real leadership by withdrawing from the Paris Accords. He said he would do away with bad deals that deprive American workers of jobs. Leadership is delivering. Trump is delivering.

    Let us contrast this with the previous faux leadership of a Nobel Peace Prize recipient who relentlessly waged war for eight years. Obama did not have the guts to bring the Paris Accords before the Senate. He did not have the leadership skills needed. Trump does and he is keeping faith with the voters.

    At the heart of the Paris Accords is the transfer of the sweat off the brows of American workers to third world kleptocrats. Over a $100 billion a year was the goal. It is the Chicago Way to soak the poor to fatten the rich. Limousines for African thugs and pink slips to American workers.

    Trump faced down deep state Europe with its undemocratic EU bureaucrats. Without doubt the pussymarchers will be demonstrating yet again. The international fake news cartel will thunder bromides at him. But he kept his pledge. He did not sell out the American economy to bask in praises for growing in office from our hostile elite. No. Trump showed True Grit and he was faithful to his voters, and that is leadership.

    1. Mystery man: I think referring to women — even women you dislike – as “pussymarchers” is course and vulgar. After all, nobody is calling you “dickhead,” right?

  4. Nice column, Matt. Trump has joined our dearest and closest allies — Syria and Nicaragua — in rejecting the accords. Trump’s cynical appeal to coal miners was the worst. He loves them! But their jobs are never coming back, thanks to natural gas and job-killing technological changes being implemented by their friends, the coal mine owners. And with all the talk of abolishing Obamacare, miners would be well advised to keep an eye on their black lung benefits. No jobs. No benefits. No clean air. Could be Trump’s campaign slogan in 2020.

  5. The marchers appropriated the use of the word that has so injured your delicate sensibilities. They presented it as a positive take on the word. Being a gentleman I have adopted the march organizers’ own term of choice. The onus for any vulgarity is upon those who cannot accept the November election.

    http://www.cnn.com/2017/01/20/politics/pussyhat-project-washington-march-trnd/

    Btw, I’m not trying to be a mystery man. Just didn’t notice that the autofill wasn’t filling.

    1. You were easy to profile.

      How’s the weather up in Maine. I may be up in Liberty in August. I’ll buy you a lobster roll.

  6. 1. DanC is apparently upset that the Women Marchers who wore and promoted “Pussy Hats” were called pussymarchers. Other women labelled them as such back in January. Moreover, they self-identified as such. Many dressed themselves as vaginas. Google the large signs they publicly and proudly displayed at their march (See Huffington Post which bragged about their “badass feminism.”) I’ll use the letter P, so as not to shock the conscience: Here are a few of the multitude of signs:: “My P. Grabs Back.” “My p. is private property” “Keep your politics off my p.” “I got an eye on my p.” “P. power” “P. trumps tyranny” “can’t hold p down” “P..- riot” “Ps. want peace.” “If you want to be tough grow a p..”

    DanC: What hurt you so much about the expression “pussymarchers” that you had to resort, once again, to name-calling?
    I’ve noticed your frequent resort to the pejorative, the derogatory epithet; the ad hominem attack. It seems to be your stock in trade. For example, you dismissively attacked not the ideas of the lawyer and award winning journalist Geraldo Rivera (the recipient of many Emmys, Peabody Prizes, Alma Awards and nominations); but his person. (Remember, you called him “a joke” and said, “no one in the real media takes him seriously.” I guess those Emmys, Peabodys and ALMA awards weren’t serious.
    You resort to epithets and applaud others who do so, then you attack Trump for doing so; you also seem to feel or feign deep hurt at the slightest rebuke.

    2. The topic at hand is Trump’s wise decision to walk away from the Paris Accords. Who says it’s wise? The Wall Street Journal in its lead editorial today, says so. It concludes thusly:

    “All of which makes the claim that the US is abdicating global leadership so overwrought. Leadership is not defined as endorsing whatever other world leaders have decided to do . . .To the extent Paris damages economic growth, the irony is that it would leave the world less prepared for climate change.”

    3. Well, Dan, at least I didn’t call you a liberal!

  7. DanC thinks Trump’s slogan should be “no jobs, no benefits, no clean air.”

    Of course, Dan knows, that the best way to get benefits is to have a job. And as the WSJ said, the Paris Accords was a job killer, a “Potemkin village”, ‘a pledge of phony progress” and “would make US industries less competitive.”

    Beyond that, America’s Air Quality as Measured by the World Health Organization is among the best in the world (7th best out of 135 countries), and is on a par with Iceland, Finland and Canada. (International Energy Agency/World Health Organisation: Particulate Matter measurements.)

    As the WSJ said, “Economic growth underwrites technological progress and human ingenuity. . . .Private economies that can innovate and provide cost-effective energy alternatives will always beat international agreements.”

    A robust economy permits us to develop the technologies and minds to redress the challenges of climate change. Too often, the world’s well-meaning bureaucrats, encumbered by central planning, inflexible goals, and red tape, stifle adaptability, inspiration, initiative and innovation.

  8. I’m a tree hugger. Always have been and its not easy being a conservative and a tree hugger to some, but to me its easy. Its a simple task of being honest. Paris Accords was too glossy. It never impressed me. Something we need to push more than anything is solar. Its free, you know. That is the sun and its shine is free.

    Take the Sahara Desert. About 2,000,000 square miles, give or take. By dawn the average temp is around 40 degrees. By mid day its between 90 and 120 depending on the season and location. Do you know how much coal it would take to raise the temperature from 40 F to 100 F in a 2,000,000 square mile sized room in 8 hours? More than we have mined. Ever. In the Sahara it is done every day by Olde Man Sun and it doesn’t cost anything. That is what is known as solar energy. Solar power. And by the way, it does that to the entire earth every day. We are missing something.

    I think Paris is a bit of a band wagon and it was easy to look like one of the guys and jump on. And to appeal to voters on the right Trump said he would get us out of Paris because he knew it was one of his promises that he could keep. It won’t make that big of a difference to the earth, I honestly believe, but I hope it doesn’t have the effect on our relationships around the world that it seems to be having quite frantically.

  9. The other thing, Geraldo Rivera’s awards can all be melted down and made into a nice shiny toilet seat. Then I would hold Wolf Blitzer’s head down there and flush it a few times. They are horrible.

  10. Comey’s testimony will surely accelerate Glorious Leader’s decline. He has lots of experience testifying. Perhaps, Trump will use executive privilege to gag the former director. If GL goes that way, and, silences Comey , the political explosion will rival Nixon’s massacre.

  11. 1. Comey is in a Catch-22. He’s already testified that never in his experience has anyone urged him to stop an investigation for political purposes.
    2. We’re all entitled to our opinions. Here’s my opinion:
    Blitzer’s an excellent interviewer; Rivera ably defends his liberal-centrist views. I prefer the conservatism of Dobbs, Buchanan, Coulter, Limbaugh, Sowell, Buckley, Milton Friedman (supply side economics) and Edmund Burke (non-interventionist, respecting history and traditions, favoring religious freedom, favoring free markets, against imposed taxes, respecting the will of the people and espousing a rather limited form of government that moves slowly and rejects “radical reform.”

    Burke, of course, favored freedom for the colonies, although urging them to freely remain a part of Britain, he opposed war and accepted their decision to break away. He was first and foremost in recognizing and condemning the excesses of the French Revolution.

    (Students today act like their led by the Jacobins; and the US today has blindly triggered revolutions in Libya, Syria, etc, without contemplating the bloody consequences. Remember, Hillary told the Syrian rebels she’d create a no-fly zone, thus emboldening them; plus US worked with Turkey and the Gulf States to foster and fund the jihadists, thus fueling the civil war. Analogously, during our Civil War, before Antietam, both France and Britain contemplated siding with the Confederates (to corner the cotton market, in part) and imagine how much more bloody our civil war might have been if they had intervened.

  12. I rarely watch CNN and MSNBC anymore. When I do, I mute all the commentators, except conservatives voices: Jeffrey Lord, Rick Santorum, Kayleigh McEnany, Jay Sekulow, Christina Pierson, e.g.
    Sadly, TDS and the DTs have seized the liberal MSM.

  13. DT is a clown , but the cosmetically disgraced lefty ” funnygal ” Griffin brandishing the gory severed head of a sitting American President is just ” speaking truth to power. ” The myopia of the Left regarding the gorge between what they espouse and what they. actually display is unfathomable. It is not perhaps myopia though . It is more aptly characterized as simple garden variety human viciousness.

  14. Reading the ‘Paris Accords’

    “It is impossible to look at the Paris climate accord with any degree of scrutiny and conclude that a remotely competent American president could have anything to do with it. This conclusion applies irrespective of whatever you might think about whether “greenhouse gas” emissions are causing a problem or even a crisis for world climate. Even if you think that the climatic effect of human GHG emissions is an existential crisis facing the planet, it would still be completely incompetent for an American president to sign on to this particular agreement.

    This conclusion follows from the most basic cost/benefit analysis. The Paris accord imposes huge and uncapped costs on the American people and economy, for little to no climate benefit — and that is even if you completely accept the U.N.’s phony climate models that have been ginned up without empirical verification to scare the bejeezus out of you. Just look at the structure of the Paris accord. The United States commits to reduce “greenhouse gas” emissions by 26-28% below 2005 levels by 2025 — only 8 years away. China, with 1.3 billion people and emissions already about double those of the U.S., agrees to no reductions whatsoever, and only to try to reach “peak” emissions by 2030 — by which time its emissions could be 50% or even 100% higher than today. India, with well over 1 billion people — a good half of whom don’t yet have electricity and somehow think they are entitled to get it — commits to nothing whatsoever. Africa, with another about 1 billion people, very few of whom currently have electricity, commits to nothing whatsoever.

    http://manhattancontrarian.com/blog/2017/6/2/0tibm28uj5hv8ndzksobz3o39ybjd7

  15. Presumably the African footprint must be tiny indeed if they do not have electricity. It looks like these numbers are based on a per capita type calculation. Still, it looks petty mushy.

    Maybe no congressional imprimatur is necessary as it is an accord-not a binding treaty.

    The gutting of the EPA is a more immediate threat. Open season for polluters?
    Bill-Milton Freidman-supply-side? Been there-done that. (Nothing wrong with giving the mortgage -packaging scams a green light. Markets will take care of that. Commodities oversight not necessary. Thanks Milton.)

  16. Still and all, I respect all opinions and stand by my own. On this score, I give Henry Barth, the A-plus for insightfulness.
    I have no fear EPA protections will be “gutted”; I hope EPA and all other bureaucracies will become lean, unobtrusive and efficient. Case Study: Dakota Access Pipeline! Green lighted environmentally by everyone, even by Army Corps of Engineers, until one Obama hack, a local Boston girl, at the end of his administration demanded another several years of meaningless reviews.

    Now for something completely different: THE BIG PICTURE (for a lazy Sunday morning)

    Here’s what I thought about last night (after saying some prayers for London) I thought about: The Sun and the mathematical constant pi (π). A big ball of fire exists in space and we exist next to it. How and why? And why do mathematical constants like pi (π) exist? You know the circumference of the sun (of any circle) is 2πr. The eternal pi! An irrational number, 3.1416 . . . . it goes on forever. Pi, the Sun, the Earth, Human Life, rational minds —a quirk, a plan, a miracle, a mystery, immanence, Oh, Immanuel, is God with us? Yes! But we mere mortals can’t fathom the ineffable! We don’t even know what dark matter is. We see through a glass darkly. But we press on!
    Then this earthling pressed on and got down to earth and brass tacks:
    I thought of the scale of things.
    Imagine if the diameter of Earth was one inch.
    Say, Earth is a small green grape. (Venus @ same size; Mars and Mercury @ half)
    On that scale, the Sun is a ball ten feet in diameter. (A giant beach ball)
    Imagine a small green grape beside it!
    Jupiter and Saturn would be size of basketballs.
    Uranus and Neptune the size of billiard balls.
    On that scale:
    Earth would be 2 miles from the sun; Mars 3 miles; Jupiter 10 miles; Saturn 20 miles; Uranus 40 miles; Neptune 60 miles.
    So, let’s say Earth is grape on the beach at L-Street South Boston; the Sun would be at Castle Island; Uranus in Plymouth and Neptune just across the Cape Cod Canal in Bourne.
    Guess how far away the nearest star would be from L-Street?
    250,000 miles. It boggles the mind.
    From the nearest star to the next galaxy, multiply 250,000 x 20,000.
    In real terms, the nearest star is about 4 light years away, the nearest galaxy about 70,000 light years away. A light year is about 6 trillion miles. It takes the nearest star’s light 4 years to reach us; the nearest galaxy’s light 70,000 years; it takes the Sun’s light 8 minutes to reach us. Today, we communicate digitally near the speed of light . . .The Internet communicates at 65% the speed of light. The Latest News: “Researchers Create Fiber Network that Operates at 99.7% Speed of Light.”

      1. ” The death toll of seven did not include the three attackers”

        This sentence was offset in the middle of a long AP article on the London Terror attacks carried by the Boston Herald. This contrasts with PC Style Manual conflating of terrorist attackers and the poor bastards they plunge long knives into in London markets as all ” Victims ” that the liberal press has lately adopted . ” That this latest attack had the linguistic signature of ” This is for Allah ” swirling into the Eternal Ether along with all historic pealings of Big Ben is cosmically significant , no doubt . That was the terrorist attackers war cry . Like William Blake I dig the grasp of ” Eternity in a grain of sand. ” That said , let it be noted that I will cross that bridge when I come to it.

        London Bridge . I have walked back and forth across Westminster Bridge. I do know where that is. Heaven can wait as Hell must continue to come A-Courtin’ . This is The Human Condition , no matter how many clowns you can fit in a van as it careens deliberately into innocents . Deplorable !

    1. When I first moved down here to The Beltway, my wife said we were going to a friend’s wedding. The groom was one of the people that got the Hubble images and played with them as the came back. Many thousands a day. That was when that amazing picture was produced with about 1000 specks of light in it. About half of the specks of light were galaxies, the other half much closer things, mostly stars. So in this picture there were about 1000 trillion stars, roughly. Possibly 1,000,000 trillion stars. Those stars, at their closest, were many light years apart. Each one was no closer than several light years from the other. What a picture.

      So I axed the guy with the picture; As I look up at the sky, how much of the sky did that picture represent? He said if you held a grain of sand up to the sky at an arms length, the area behind that grain of sand was what was in that picture. It has since been adjusted slightly to about the size of a pea being held at arms length. So, in summing up, its a big universe. Where do you think Heaven is?

      1. Heaven suffuses all, the great and small. The Cosmos (or Multiverse?) and our human minds, bodies and souls. There are more stars than grains of sand on all the beached on Earth. Each human body has one trillion cells which perform one trillion biochemical processes per second; one hundred billion neurons in the human brain each with 10,000 synapses to other neurons (some nerve cells have 100,000 synapses) and there are 24 types of synapses, and inside all these cells, one-trillion biochemical processes per second are occurring. The brains’ storage capacity is measured in petabytes; it’s potential perhaps unfathomable, with today’s science. (Yes, computers beat chess masters, but can’t skip rope, compose poetry and laugh, simultaneously.)
        I saw a five year old girl, Edith Abigail Fuller, home-schooled, win an Oklahoma regional spelling bee (against 12 and 14 year olds). This year (2107), she became the youngest ever to compete in the Schripp’s World Championship, held in Oxon Hill, Md. She correctly spelled her two words, but didn’t move on with the 40 finalists, because they had a “writing test” component, and of course, (by six years old, then), she hadn’t mastered writing as well the middle-schoolers and young teens. A 12 year old sixth grader eventually won the championship.
        There’s hope for Mankind!
        There’s a heaven, too. It’s in and of our minds; it’s on our minds; and all around us. We’ll find it and get there someday, hopefully!

        So, yes to, Blake’s “world in a grain of sand, heaven in a flower” and yes to Kipling’s If : “fill each minute with sixty seconds worth of distance run” and yes to Milton’s “God doth not need man nor his own works; His kingdom is stately; thousands at His bidding speed and post o’er land and sea without haste; they also serve who only stand and wait.”

        They say seek and you shall find: The Kingdom awaits those who seek it.

        I liked that movie “The Keys to the Kingdom” and the play: “Waiting for Godot!” and Graham Greene’s novel “The Power and the Glory” and Benini’s statute, “The Ecstasy of St. Terese.” Heaven’s like Bliss . . . sometimes a human being gets there, even while still on Earth.

        And doubt helps us get there too . . .Remember Frost’s “The Road Not Taken”: “Two roads diverged in a yellow wood . . .” The man had a choice . . .he stopped and pondered . . . then took the road less traveled by . . .

          1. And how small is small? Well, there is no particle of matter that cannot be split in half. Sometimes its better not to think too hard.

          2. Get to the Point ( insert smiley face here) so that the irony of things in general is given a deferential nod ) … It is that predicate of ” Get ” that points us away from who we already are , methinks .

          1. Yep , … William …. Inspired prose ! Giacometti’s WALKING MAN sculpture is pretty damn good too !

          2. So the Arrow is never moving but Walking Man never stops.

            As an aside, I went to the Giacometti exhibit at the Hirshhorn when I first came to DC and I’m tellin’ ya. In person those skinny bastids are off the charts amazing.

          3. Well … How many angels can fit on the head of a pin anyways ? ( Ironic smiley face, here)

  17. I don’t have all the answers, but here’s some:
    In 2012, 57% of Africans were without electricity; 70% in sub-Saharan Africa. Africa contributes about 5% to global greenhouse gases: mainly from South Africa, Egypt, Algeria, Libya, Morocco, Nigeria (together 4% of global); rest of Africa 1%.

    Neither Milton Friedman nor John Maynard Keynes was infallible. I much prefer Friedman’s and Sowell’s views. Free enterprise does not mean no regulation. Friedman himself never argued for “no regulation.” President Reagan followed Friedman’s policy of free enterprise, and we got an economic boom, the same we got from Calvin Coolidge, who favored smaller government, lower taxes, less regulation. Friedman and Reagan’s economic boom is what helped the unraveling of the Soviet Union.
    Friedman never would have bailed out the Banks which (1) were forced by the government to issue risky mortgages and (2) mostly on their own took unnecessary, unreasonable risks, in futures, options, derivatives, etc. Friedman would have let the Banks and its Bondholders, Stockholders take the loss, not the taxpayers. Friedman would have let the Banks go through Bankruptcy Court. Debate the Bailout, but it was a government bailout, not a free enterprise endeavor.

    1. Couple with huge deficits and a threat to disregard accepted treaties (ABM). Reagan was not a god but he garners a lot of worship.

  18. What happened in London is nothing compared to the mayhem in Mosul. Everyday, hundreds of people, mostly civilians, are killed. Where’s Western media’s sense of proportion? Why isn’t that carnage being covered as closely as the bloodshed in London? Could it be, because, no (white) Europeans are being slaughtered in Mosul? If the bloodletting in the Mideast got as much attention as yesterday’s incident in London, perhaps, Americans would get an inkling about what motivates the terrorists’ actions. For every action there is a reaction. Life will be even harder, now, for the Muslim community in Britain. Fear and prejudice rule the day. The “gray area” is shrinking (al-Naji). There is a dread suspense in the air. This Ramadan, we all pray that nothing happens here.

    1. The war in Mosul is not being covered by the US media, as you wrote, but that may be in part because it is regarded as a war among Muslim factions. That war between the People of Tradition and the Party of Ali nearly is as old as the faith itself, only now there are surrogate states like Saudi Arabia and Iran.

      What does motivate the ‘terrorists’ actions?’ Faith-based or not?

      1. Economics based, but, religiously worded. The struggle is about control of resources, primarily, and, after, that, patronage.

    2. War is hell! In war zones, innocent civilians die. But it is Al Qaeda, ISIS, et al who are the major instigators of wars.
      It is different when innocents are deliberately targeted, and, yes, revulsion should be universal, whenever civilians are targeted whether in Kabul, Mosul, Egypt (Coptic Christians), London, Paris or Boston.
      We all pray for an end to wars and an end to terrorism.

  19. London is not Mosul . Many perish in many places for many reasons that resist prolix pedantic analyses or any attempt to satisfactorily explain just why the terrorists do what they do. Let the heady debate rage on . In the meanwhile let it be duly noted that the Mayor of London ,, Sadiq Khan , is not a white European . And he is plenty perturbed at the moment .

  20. Too much is made of Sunni/Shia conflict. In Iraq, before the American invasion, inter-marriage between the sects was common. After Sunni Saddam Hussein invaded Shia Iran, Iraqi-Arab Shia recruits marched off to battle Persian Iran without demur. The taqfiris like the West to believe there’s a blood feud on between the Sunni and Shia. It’s just not the case. That’s like seeing the American Civil War as a struggle between northern Catholics and southern Protestants. Very misleading.

  21. Perhaps, so. We all have much to learn, but there’s no doubt, is there, that the leading terrorist groups are now Sunni Muslims.
    All the attacks in US and Europe, since 9/11 and before, have been from Sunni Muslims. Perhaps, it’s best to say, “almost all.”
    So, there are differences.
    Protestants were the large majority in both the North and South during the Civil War, and many Catholics fought on both sides. I’ve read that every Catholic Bishop in the South supported the Confederacy. Also the Fighting Tiger Regiment of Louisiana (how LSU got its Tiger mascot) was composed mostly of poor Irish Catholic laborers who worked the docks along the Mississippi from New Orleans to Baton Rouge.
    Remember, the O’Hara family in Margaret Mitchell’s great classic “Gone with the Wind”? The O’Haras were an Irish-Catholic, French-Catholic family. Remember, Scarlett O’Hara’s second husband? Frank Kennedy. And her third? Rhett Butler?

    1. Hizballah, IRGC/Pasdaran, and, Vevak/MOIS are all Shia organizations, and, all are on the US proscribed list for terrorism. Hizballah is more dangerous than DAESH. Sunni terrorists didn’t blow up the Marine barracks at the airport in Beruit. Shia mujahidun did, and, they also, destroyed the American embassy killing off some of the top people in the CIA Mideast crew. The Argentinian synagogue bombing was pulled off by Shia terrorists. There was a large Shia diaspora out of Lebanon in the 1940’s. The Shia terrorist organizations have operating cells in place among the migrants throughout Sub-Saharan Africa and South America. That is one of the reasons that the coming war with Iran could get tricky. Iran would reply asymmetrically to any direct attack by the US.

      1. True Khalid, that is why I modified the “all” to “almost all”. I was thinking of Hezbollah, when I made the modification. Still, true, about the “leading” terrorist groups and the attacks in Europe and USA.
        Hezbollah offshoots have struck world wide.
        I’ll check out Robert Fisk.

    2. Sunni Muslims are the majority of Assad’s forces. They have their own military neighborhood in Damascus, It’s called Dahiya. Young Syrians from the village hinterlands join the military to take a step up economically. If they achieve company officer rank, they’re encouraged by the regime to invest their pay in purchasing property in Dahiya. Syria isn’t a sectarian conflict.

  22. If anyone wants to understand a little more about the Mideast, in general, and, Syria, in particular, follow Robert Fisk’s articles in the Independent. You might not like his politics, but, his reporting is on the money. He’s a very perceptive fellow. Not only that, he knows every low-down dive in Beirut, up to, and, including, the American Dream Bar, a couple of blocks off Bliss, over by AUB.

    1. My next door neighbor is my fact sheet. Lebanese Christian that is so plugged in that it is scary. But I will check out Fisk as well. Never look a gift source in the mouth.

      1. Abe, I used to hang out in Bisharri, and, Baalbak. Ask your friend if he knows any Jaafars from Baalbak, or, Ramis from Bisharri. If your pal is Maruni he’ll know all about Bisharri. It’s a beautiful place. Much better than Ehden

        1. I haven’t been able to find him today. He’ll be around. His wife is from Tripoli so she will probably know the area well.

          My in laws lived in Europe for so many years and back in the good old days always went to Lebanon for R+R. The beaches and food and scenery and people were great. I heard many stories, all good, about their trips to that country.

          1. True, that.

            There’s a lot of complexity in that very small place. Lubnan is a labyrinth, easy to get into, but, hard to get out. It captivates like a jewel.

        2. My neighbor and his wife are quite familiar with Bisharri and Baalbak. Not too surprisingly one has the best hashish in the world but quite surprisingly the other is near some fantastic snow skiing. Neither one of them knows any Jaafars or Ramis but I did hear the word Hezbollah mentioned several times. And the agreed that the area is one of extraordinary beauty.

          1. Baalbak is the logistics center that supports Hezbollah forces fighting in in Syria, particularly, in the Qalamoun Mts., which are just north of the city. Hezbollah took over the huge walled Syrian military/intel base that looms over town. It’s a short road trip to Dimashq.

            The Jaafars are a Shia tribe/family they number over ten thousand and are one of the crime tribes of Baalbak, of which there are over two dozen. I got to know the septs of two families in the city. The other is the Ziater tribe/family, also, Shia. Sometimes, the two families work together. Other times, they are trying to kill each other. Everybody in Baalbak goes strapped. It’s that kind of place. Very exciting!

          2. “Everybody in Baalbak goes strapped. It’s that kind of place. ”

            Kind of like Virginia!

          3. Khalil Gibran lived in Bisharri. His old home is preserved as a monument to him. Bisharri is a strong LF town. No matter what shop, or, home, you visit, Dr Geagea is always gazing down at you.

    2. I have been reading Fisk. I do so with an open mind. His details are impressive but his stance leaves little room for opposing opinions. That is fine with me. Both sides have their freedom to speak. Fisk certainly has a knack for backing up his statements quickly with well developed lines of facts. I think he is worth reading for people on both sides of the argument.

      1. One wonders sometimes whether a ” Fisk ” might be more useful in a book form so that it might be employed to bang the dialectical boneheads in the noggin . Academia is chock full of nuts . Arguments can be marshalled , ” lines of fact can be developed, ” and there will always be a majority of ” experts” who do not share William’s humility of …. ” Well , I do not have all the answers , but here goes ….”

        Dry as Iraqi dust ! American military support for Europe and its hopeless and fruitless entanglement in the Mideast has bankrupted it ; morally as well as economically . Screw the seductive and beguiling arguments of the academics who always hang draperies of fact and conjecture on whatever particular skin they may happen to have in the game. Our Iraq involvement : mistaken , misguided, and obscene . Ditto Afghanistan . I care more about the denizens of Roslindale Square in Boston than the ghosts of THE AMERICAN DREAM bar in Beirut ” a couple of blocks off off Bliss.”

        We have followed our ” Bliss ” in that region.
        We have lost much ” blood and treasure .” Is it not indeed linguistically seductive and beguiling to be allowed to encapsulate a world of personal and National horrors in such a piratical metaphor ? This is the problem with words. They lie as easily as they tell the truth . The verbal diarrhea of the Left . Talk about a shit show !

      2. Abe, that’s a tricky question. Christians are accorded a majority by law. The Muslim birth rate, particularly, among the Shia, threatens that de jure majority. Objective analysis puts the Muslim population higher than Christian, these days. The demographic problem was a major cause of the civil war. Shia wanted to be apportioned their fair share of government patronage according to their 1970’s numbers in the Lebanese population, rather, than, the earlier law, which, was based on a government census taken back in the 1940s, when, Christians held a clear numerical majority. Taking a new census is impossible because of the political situation.

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