Friday, November 17, 2017

The Maidan Snipers : a smoking gun.

One of the things that has yet to happen in the new, rebutylhydrated EUkraine is the trial of some Berkut riot police accused of 'inhumanity' on the Maidan and indirectly blamed, by the current government, with killing Maidan protesters. The most notable incident of the killing as video recorded for posterity - the Maidan 'snipers' who changed a protest into a coup.

Today there is a news scoop on that topic.

The Georgian Connection

The same story from somebody else.

What we already know:

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Maple Flavoured War Stories - Remembrance 2017

One of the interesting things about wars, as they recede into history, are the 'accretions of valor' they pick-up from those who, apparently, were never noticed or failed to be mentioned but who,  now it seems, conveniently fit into  the 'equal rights', 'multiple-gendered', 'politically correct' world we live in. To become even more memorable,  wars of the past are having their gay, minority groups, female aspects 'discovered' and brought to the fore.

The Great War as a study in history still has much grist to be ground.  The Western Front is and has been the major focus of much or western 'history' and literature the echoes of that war rang down into the explosion of its sequel.  But there is 'an epic' of the astern world, outside the cinematography of Lawrence of Arabia,  that tied the world-up into the late twenties and gave rise the troubles of that region to-day. Afghanistan became a problem after the target war - one solved by the newly fandangled 'air power' which is, still, being used to 'solve' its problems  - with far less obvious success than it had then,  when it actually frightened them..

The Great War was also fought in the Pacific raising an ally to the position of 'an empire' and setting the stage for another war a quarter century later.  While Hemingway may have created noble female participants and the stories of Edith Cavell and Mata Hari are still fairly well-known, there were other less remarked 'women at war' - Lara of Dr. Zhivago and other nursing sisters on every front.

Edith Cavell
The story of the first licensed female driver in Ontario - volunteering to 'go' and being denied is now 'reborning' - if it was ever 'outed' before. Not only did she go on her own, she organized an ambulance and drove wounded warriors to the French port town for evacuation to 'Blighty'.  There was an all-female Battalion of Death that was supposedly deployed on the Eastern Front and the history of the allied intervention in the Revolution is something that could use more study. So far no one has stepped up to reinterpret the US 'Rainbow' Division as anything 'special'; although no doubt some of its members were  homosexually-oriented, other soldier-heroes apparently were.

A  modern day recollection of a secret all-Chinese Canadian  unit deployed into the WW2 jungles of Burma was in the media this Remembrance day.  While I know nothing about the 'ultra secret' unit and its operations,  it does ring sort of true that somebody occidental might think that any oriental could fool the Japanese in Burma better than a 'regular' Canuck from Bobcaygeon or somewhere else civilized.  It probably wouldn't dawn on such a 'sore thumb',  that Chinese-Canadians might be equally-hamstrung trying to blend-in with the Burmese.  Any of those Chinese-Canadians meeting a Burmese, could have been told that wasn't 'on'. I would hope the unit never was deployed, or  sent to an area in Burma where there were no Japanese,  or Burmese.

Chinese Vet remembers Secret Service

I'm trying to figure out how a Chinaman would even get into the Canadian Army of the Second World War - they must have known someone (?) -  as Japanese Canadians and other European 'enemy nationals'  were getting interned.  It must have been after the 'zombies' had created the 'manpower shortage' that brought on conscription and a constitutional crisis with Quebec.  For among other parts of real history ignored or played down,  are the facts that Canadians weren't too multiculturally tolerant, even in WW2,  ( it was worse in WW1). That, while the Brits of Canada (most of the population)  rallied to 'save the Motherland' in 1914,   by 1917 not as many were volunteering (in England either) .   That Canadians had a vibrant memory of the 'killing fields', and casualty lists, and so, when 'the balloon went up' again, in 1939 there were even fewer who wanted to go overseas (actually there were enough to form 2 Canadian Divisions (50 000)  as opposed to those volunteering  staying 'at home'  to defend Canada from foreign invasion.  Getting those 'zombies' to change their minds is an even odder, and not-too-creditable, saga.

The Brits had a poignant ad for their Remembrance Day  this year - current members of the forces remembered parents who had, or hadn't, been in service and "blokes they'd had lost" in current operations. They were 'remembering the sacrifice'. It strikes me that modern-day Afghans and Syrians and Libyans and Yemenis don't have to remember much at all,  they just need to go smell a graveyard.

Remembering: Brit style

I'll close with something uplifting. We all know how Hong Kong, which figured so much in the history of WW2 was returned to the rule of Red China. Apparently the 'communist masters' permit a very British tradition to  remain - and the organizations to maintain it.

Yet to be remembered, let alone 'tributed' (outside the Irish Republic), is Sir Roger Casement - a member if the British Ascendancy, hanged for treason  during the Great War, for having had some truck with the Germans and being arrested after being dropped by U-boat, in Ireland, to assist with their mid-war 'rebellion'. At the time,  he was castigated as a homosexual libertine almost as much as for his treachery.  Now-a-days he would be neither.


Anthony Bourdain would be the first to tell you that the quality of any meal starts with what it looks like on the plate.  Some meals that have 'eye appeal', off the calorie chart, can taste like wet cardboard and other meals that look like they should be in the dog's dish can be sheer delight on the tongue. The same logic as Bourdain's 'looks' is taken to ridiculous extremes when the the 'ingredients' and the 'outcomes' are far less attractive and often anything but palatable. I'm talking about international affairs and the elite among us who earn living having them. This stuff is what big business used to be.

I was watching an old Afghanistan documentary the other night, I think I've mentioned it before, but it included a 'bit' where two  US Marine 'advisors' are instructing a number of Afghan troopers in the fine points of proper hygiene.  After giving then the 'wash-up before you eat' and caution about what the bad bacteria a can do to you - they pause to let their message about sanitary wipes sink in. That tales a couple of minutes for the Afghans to figure out - no doubt as the translator puts the lesson into a language the Afghans understand.  They 'get it' quickly and, surprisingly, they're insulted. The Americans are telling them something they learned at their mother's knee - something the Americans - used to soap water, thorough cooking and decontamination procedures up the yin-yang - don't seem to realize - that Afghans, bring raised in a Moslem culture,  without the benefit of regular showers an flushing port-a-sans , decent refrigeration ,  preserved foods  and lacking the concept of  paper used  only for wiping shit - are scrupulously careful to avoid contaminating what they put in their mouth  with whatever might be 'left over from yesterday' and coming out.  I'm hoping that those two Americans were aware that the left hand, for Muslims, has a purpose that the right hand just never shares.  If they were,  they failed to mention that - other than saying they 'had no intention of offending anybody' - which put a skid mark on the rest of the presentation. If they had anything good to impart that was lost in the subsequent Afghan  round of 'these guys think we're idiots'.   The presentation - meant for the folks back home, courtesy of a front line videographer -  was lost on the Afghans and served no purpose.

When it comes to that home front and far more important things, the 'presentation' is sometimes blown out of all proportion. Sometimes the presentation is everything.

I don't know if the military has a training program in intra-unit communications,  but as in any self-respecting organization - getting the word out well is probably a leadership tool skill.  But I have a feeling that, like the briefing for General Dreeble's visit in Joe Heller's  'Catch 22' ,  those so involved might get carried away with the beauty of their 'weapons' - or rather their power point and slide making skills. There have been reports of some incredibly intricate schematics used to describe probably far-less-complicated situations - done,  I would imagine , when the presenter doesn't know his stuff and hopes bullshit will baffle brains. I remember Ben Netanyahu addressing the US with a graphic that looked like something from a Wile E Coyote cartoon and using a red marker to draw a red line on it. Ludicrous!  He did the same thing again,verbally , at a more  recent event,  when he interrupted his speech to recognize Trumps' son-in-law and fellow Hebrew, Jared Cushner. Granny Netanyahu cooed about how he remembered the lad as a baby and inquired "How long is it now that we have known you?"  The Roman emperor couldn't have done a better job talking  to little  hostage Herod in some Hollywood epic.  Americans just eat up that homemade shit but such stuff comes honestly,I guess, to them.

Pattun 2: I AM the Presentation

Look at the way they're cocked-up to be  special.  They look like the country club set with their very own caddies and, in some cases, social planners and personal 'fluffers'. A lot of 'really important' Americans play it like that. J. Paul Bremer comes to mind. I'd bet that John Negroponte never sat on a dirt floor or got fleas.  If he did it was 'for fun'.  He certainly didn't get too near the Miskitos.

Look at the photo of America's latest  military Triumvirate .  Not only are the mood lighting and camera angle enough to enhance 'the willies', the occasion is meant to portray substantial change for 'the guys' were reporting that,  after 17 years,  the Afghans were finally 'involved' - like really really involved -  with America's war in their country.

They're NOT dicking-around any more

As if in counterpoint, the Taliban attacked the Afghan  Military,  across Afghanistan, killing over a 100 of them last week alone and wrapping things up by sending another American home in a box.

There's a lot of deep thinking in train these days as the good guys try to get a wheel back on the wagon of 'democrazy' that seems to be heading into a Calvin&Hobbesian drainage ditch,  This is an interesting study - done to the Nth to impress with  'Presentation'.

The CSIS Study on how best to address Terrorist violence World-wide

Tony Blair and Leon Panetta, the original 'bullshit artist' and the latter-day 'Pagliacci' headed-up an all-star panel of, essentially, western think-tankers to come up with the best way to 'tackle' a terrorism problem that has only grown since first we noticed it in 2001. Essentially it boiled down to three things:  First - baffle them with bullshit - flood the "ideas market" with the kind of thinking about a possible heaven on earth brought to the have-nots by free markets and western business.  Second: do what good guys do best and cut off their funding. And, third: failing the first tow, go all out to kill them. The order is mine - I have a feeling that number three could be number one because it is both easier and ultimately more effective.  More of the same with glossy new packaging and brilliant photography depicting the ultimate objective (even some humanitarian white Helmets). If they don't stop - 13th century living  via  21st century bombardment.

The big weakness, aside from the obvious repetition of failed policy expecting a different outcome  here, is that it's written as an 'action-paper' for Donald Trump. And yet it doesn't mention him once.  Lightweights at work. Ergo: FAIL.

Here's another 'slick little piece', this time on the sort of distaff side that global thinkers don't bother thinking too much  about. But it's the kind of thing that probably got that old terrorism ball rolling in the first place. And the kind of thing that has probably been at the root of every evil ever done. It's about somebody 'screwing up' and, first,  nobody giving a shit. Then spending an awful lot of time and resources to cover their asses. It's the kind of thing that both Blair and Panetta have done - personally.

An Australian Tale: The Valley

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Syria: Another stinking pile of Democratic Doo Doo

The truth about Syria is emerging and will one day - it is to be hoped - see the perpetrators of a staged revolution hauled before the World Court - or better still, fall victims to their own petard - none of them are what anybody would call secure in their establishment.

From the earliest days anybody who was reading more than the US media - where Saddam was depicted as having children beaten and killed, his people brutalized by police goons and cast into dungeons - were hearing a quiet dissonance in the 'chorus of freedom' rising in Syria.    If it hadn't been for disorders breaking out across the Arab world,  as people "cried out for more democracy on social media' - as well as a break from rising bread,  food and fuel prices (after a western engineered food staples price increase), we might not have understood how Syria would 'go wobbly',  like Libya and Egypt  did. After all,  the Syrians and their government seemed to have coped, fairly-well, with a 10 year drought and population shift into the urban areas - none of that caused an uprising.  It turns out that what did cause an uprising was the CIA and Saudis providing weapons and money as well as numbers of foreign fighters, to take things to a dark side. And we 'suckers for a good fight', out west, were panting for some humanitarianism after the press and media pulled another wag the dog on us. America was almost disingenuous in its 'uninvolvement',  as it 'let' the French and British call for the 'invasionary overthrow'. It did  set an ambassador to provide 'photo ops' of visits to 'friendly riots' and protests  - while he begged Assad for  mercy and a resignation. Photos of what appeared to be American 'trainers',  in mufti, started to appear on military photo sites.   Within the first year there were car bomb attacks in Damascus and other towns and a retaliatory strike that was rumoured to have killed Saudi Security Minister  Bandar Bin Sultan,  who disappeared from the Saudi 'whirl' after that explosion  and  has yet to return to the public eye.

Sarah Abed offers this explanation of the early days

Every Syrian I have spoken with, whether they side with Assad or not,  explain that it was not local forces, on either side, that caused them to flee the country - it was "gunmen" - armed foreigners who quickly took the fight to unexpectedly violent levels and threatened  to involve them in it directly, or indirectly.

Who these gunmen were was not unknown to the US security services and, hence, to the government.  Material leaked by Snowden pointed to the direct involvement of the Saudis in directing attacks that killed civilians in Damascus. At least one operation noted in US security sources

The intercept that might have changed everything

Six months before Assad was accused of gassing his own people the first time, a British newspaper printed what it claimed were emails from a hacked site in Malaysia belonging to a British security firm. The emails detailed plans to import Libyan weapons of Russian manufacture and engineer an outrage that could be blamed on Assad.  That story quickly went south when the security firm sued the British paper that published the story for libel. That case later wound-up, successfully, for the security firm - who, if they didn't make money off the Syria plan,  made money from the court ruling. e are very aware that, at about the same time the British court ruled, Assad was accused of firing sarin tipped missiles into a rebel-held area. The UN investigated and Obama threatened war.

We all 'know' that Assad used rocket artillery to gas his rebelling people. An incident that nearly led to a war with the USA, did lead to Assad dis-arming himself, chemically, and was later investigated and demonstrated that the incident might have been more like that spurious, 'emailed  scenario' mentioned above, than the one we all believed.

Would the  news that 'the bozos',  so roundly congratulated by -  and later armed at the behest of -  John McCain, were in fact the command echelon of what would turn out to be  ISIS,   have changed anything? Not even if they 'offed' the Pope,  or bull-dozed every church in Syria.  They were there to remove Assad for us. And had they not tried removing the Shiite government of Iraq instead - threatening much of the 'goodness' we had already done there, they might well have succeeded making that Caliphate, governed from Baghdad, instead of Mosul, Idlib,  or Raqqa.

If they'd been really smart they'd have gotten us to arm and pay for it all  - massacring everybody only after we anointed them.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

'Bang' to the Nth

There are places on Earth where violent men with guns are a regular fact of life. We like to think that 'those people' in 'those places' hold a lesser value for life than we, more enlightened folk do. But in all the great gun range that is our ballistic world,  one land stands head and shoulders above the rest for the regularity of banal killings executed with a firearm  - and the reticence of the governments or legislatures to put any meaningful  restrictions on the right to own a firearm 'guaranteed' under the national constitution - that land is the United States of America

a jaded, biased perspective from the ax-grinders at the Intercept

And so it was only with mild shock and a little dismay that the World learned that America had self-inflicted another 'national tragedy'- as opposed to say another attack by those who hate freedom - that would have been really serious. As it is there are some roads closed on the Vegas Strip, windows busted in a tourist hotel and the next audience taking in some live 'ennertainment' will be doing so with an ear cocked for a volley of automatic rifle fire.

The undertakers re still busily packing corpses for FedEx shipment and the hospitals are only starting to tote-up the costs to be passed on to insurers or, worse, sent to home addresses. As in most of its other tragedies America is 'go funding me'  dollars at the victims. The 'News' networks are beating the story to death and even if they don't really understand what happened, most Americans aren't thinking it had as much to do the 'the beauty of our weapons' as much as the mentality of a trigger-man, who fired into a crowd so far away he could only imagine the effect of his shots. Although he did have 'optics' on at least one of his weapons - he might have seen,  but he probably didn't hear.

He wasn't long for this world either - being deceased himself by the time - within minutes that it took for the swat squad, alerted by a 'fire alarm' set off by the battlefield barrage,  to come through the wall. Strange that the picture of the dead man's body - making an assumption he, somehow, made his head something to be kept from the public -  had something that looked very much like another supine person's foot  beside his leg.  What was up with that?

This past week another attack was thwarted. Actually it wasn't an attack. It probably wasn't thwarted either.  It wasn't even noticed.

The Airport bomber

But the real problem with America and its guns is:

Maybe to get some attention, or maybe just because he was  'mad' or 'nuts',  another shooter cut loose in two schools in Chicago killing 2 and wounding  2 others.   And somebody went wack-o in Maryland an killed thee people - one in a nearby state.

The beauty of it is that,  three weeks later,  it's like nothing happened.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

North Korean Tourism

Them 'dedly' Norks.

Some screwballs can visit North Korea - talk to the locals and even act silly  - without falling afoul the NKVD or the evil that is Kim.

Other tourists - generally 'returning' Korean ones - particularly the 'born again' variety,  have run afoul Korea's draconian espionage and sedition laws and have spent considerable amounts of time in what we style 'Korean gulags'.

And then, sometimes, bad things happen to people who really, on the surface, didn't do all that much wrong - like a young Chinese-American tourist shot when she entered a restricted border zone a few years ago   or a kid who just wanted a souvenir.

A visit gone bad: OTTO WARMBIER

Otto Warmbier a young American visited North Korea as a tourist in 2015.  Whatever he was like when arrived in North Korea,  was at some very noticeable odds with how he was when he came home.  He died within a month of his arrival back in the USA. His parents refused an autopsy and any medical studies that might have explained what happened to him are, so far, inconclusive.

 It seems evident that something did happen to him.

The first thing is that he was arrested after removing a 'propaganda poster' from his hotel to, I imagine, take back home with him.  By the time he appeared in a North Korean court he was exhibiting some noticeable psycho-physical affects.  At times he appeared alert and normal, at other times he appeared dazed and detached. At one point he seemed unable to walk on his own. He was visibly emotional admitting his 'crime' and asking for leniency.  The court gave him 20 years.

The North Koreans claimed that, at some point during his imprisonment, he contracted botulism and "after taking a sleeping pill" - no timeline defined here - he went into a coma.  He was 'comatose' when he arrived back in the USA but his family claim he was howling like an animal,  unresponsive to them and "disfigured".  Doctors treating him noted that there was significant loss of  brain tissue.

Warmbier's parents were on the news and talk show circuit almost immediately, claiming that the Koreans and brutally tortured their son,  after a 'sham' trial in which he was 'unfairly' convicted.    Donald Trump tweeted sentiments   corresponding to theirs.

American government agencies decried his arrest and trial and incarceration but there are no diplomatic ties to Korea, so Warmbier was essentially left on his own.  There were no US representatives available in North Korea to see to his welfare  - no 'good offices' of other nations on which the US could call to look after the interest of a US citizen.

The USA is looking after his interests now,  as Warmbier  seems to fall into the 'beautiful baby' classification that resulted in Syria being attacked.  Warmbier's treatment probably has as much to do with North Korean isolation as does their nuclear threat and rocket tests.   He isn't however an 'icon' - so far he isn't a Davy Crockett or a Nathan Hale.

What he is,  is a victim of 60 years of  US intransigence. If North Korea isn't being ignored, it's being classed as a threat. 60 years in which a couple of generations of American have stood guard on the ramparts of Democracy on the 38th  parallel - hostile to North Koreans and best allies to their southern cousins. That, as much as anything, has stopped Koreans from solving their purely political, but now 'time honored' differences.

Positively Electrifying

Nicola Tesla had a large role in turning Ontario Canada into the first publicly-electrified jurisdiction in the World.   After he left electricity in Ontario was a truly public  utility until a 'Pregeressive0 Conservative' government decided that selling it off to pay down public debt was a smarter idea. It was hived off to private enterprise who, we are told, are "investing in it" and, naturally , reaping the profits  from steadily increasing electricity rates. 

This past year the current government in Ontario 'swore' they would do something about skyrocketing electricity bills.  They did.  In return for the hydro industry placing a 7 year 'freeze' on  profit-driven increase, s the Government has 'foregone' their portion of the bill derived from a Sales Tax applied to them and agreed that the rates will increase again in 2024 to allow the industry to recoup its losses. 

Instead of a common-sensible reset of already overly high bills - those private owners have to pay down the money they borrowed to buy the business  - government has provided a band aid which will be ripped off later when they're long gone.  

I wrote a letter to gripe about this and received a nice letter back. 

Note the reference to delivery rates - that's one of the for factors that go into making your monthly bill - the charge for the electricity you use (another factor) related to the time you use it (another factor) which is function of the cost of producing electricity (another factor) with relevent fees and surcharges etc (other factors)  that go into the overall 'cost' of electricity divided among the three Electric Corporations and related Production Corporations.  Simple eh?

 If you read the  nice letter you realize there is no solution - just another layer of bullshit. 

Dear  (ME) 

Thank you for your email to our Customer Communication Centre.

We heard from our customers that their delivery rates were too high so we advocated on their behalf to the government to ensure fairness across all electricity customers and the Fair Hydro Plan is a result of that.  The actions we have taken to date demonstrate our new leaderships’ commitment to improving our customer service and our relationship with our customers. The new Hydro One is working harder than ever to put our customers first and we see advocating to government on their behalf as our responsibility. The recommendations we brought to the government reflect what we have heard from our customers across the province, many of whom were struggling to afford their monthly electricity bills.

The Fair Hydro Plan has created a more fair and affordable electricity system for customers living outside of urban centres. About 60% of our customers now benefit from a delivery line that is in line with the provincial average, which represents a savings of approximately $600 a year. The Fair Hydro Plan helps those who need it the most; fixed-income, rural and Northern customers who have been struggling to pay rising electricity bills.

You may not be aware that the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) sets the commodity price and that this is the rate that has been frozen.  The OEB announced lower electricity prices for Regulated Price Plan (RPP) customers effective May 1, 2017. The OEB estimates more than 90 per cent of electricity customers in Ontario will benefit from these lower prices. These prices will be in effect until April 30, 2018.

Customers who are not on the Regulated Price Plan (RPP) but are eligible under the Fair Hydro Act, 2017 will see their bills lowered through a reduction in their Global Adjustment charges. These customers include those who are eligible for the RPP but have chosen a contract with an energy retailer or spot market pricing instead. The Ontario Energy Board has set a Global Adjustment credit of $32.90 per MWh, which translates to about 3.3 cents per kWh. The Global Adjustment credit will be effect from July 1, 2017 to April 30, 2018.

The Government of Ontario has created a site to address any concerns, opinions or thoughts regarding the Fair Hydro Plan. Your feedback is important and I would recommend completing the form provided on the following link:

The affordability fund will help customers make their home more energy efficient if they, cannot afford to make energy efficiency improvements and or do not qualify for the Save on Energy Home Assistance Program. The fund will help electricity customers in need who cannot qualify for low-income conservation programs. It will provide support to customers for energy efficiency improvements to help reduce their future electricity bills. The government will pay for this fund through provincial revenues.

There is also the Ontario Electricity Support Program (OESP), this program provides eligible low-income households with a reduction on their electricity bill. We encourage customers to check to see if they are eligible to receive a credit. First Nations and M├ętis customers are eligible for an enhanced credit. Eligibility requirements changed on May 1, 2017 and more customers will qualify for a credit. If any of the folks you help require assistance they can visit  or call 1-855-831-8151 for details.

Regarding your concerns of the involvement of the United Way, in-line with OEB's guidelines, we use a lead agency that can support province-wide delivery of the LEAP program. The United Way then works with local agencies to support customers at a more local level through in-take agencies. The Unite Way is also equipped to combine multiple assistance programs available in each community to maximize financial assistance for the customer. This is an area that would be outside a utility's experience.

Hydro One made the decision to partner with a single local agency, The United Way in order to streamline the customer’s experience. By partnering with the United Way, we were able to reduce wait times for this process as there is one point of contact for all applications, rather than applications coming in from dozens of agencies across the province. As a result, we are able to better assist our customers and manage our LEAP portfolio, while also providing an improved customer experience.

The United Way is a highly regarded agency within the Not For Profit sector and we felt that they would provide the most comfortable, timely and effortless experience for our customers.  

Thank you for taking the time to write and share your concerns.

Senior Customer Consultant, Customer Service
Hydro One Networks Inc.
185 Clegg Road
Markham, ON, L6G 1B7
Tel:   905.946.6211
Tel:  800.419.5208 ext. 6211

Received: 8/5/2017 6:57:29 PM
Subject: Thanks for nothing

Thanks for the recent email you sent about my new 'bill decrease'. I am
overjoyed. But there are a couple of points I would like to raise in
clarification of all that happiness.

"Advocating with government" seems to me to be asking for a stay of
execution. In return for being able to jack the rates into low earth orbit
in a number of years Hydro one and the electricity oligarchs of Ontario
have only committed to not increasing rates during that period, the rates
will, however, remain at the high rates that caused that "advocacy".

The brunt of the 'decrease' is being absorbed by 'the government' - viiz
hydro rate payers - in the reduction of applicable HST charges. Somebody
will want to increase income tax levels or other charges, to 'recoup' that
lost income.

I notice that the affordability fund is now a cornerstone of the Electricity
picture. In my estimation rather than having me pay a little more (hidden on
my bill) to make sure those who may not be able to afford their Hydro
costs have a little institutional charity available (I actually work to
assist some of those poor folk) - would it not be more sensible to have
affordable electricity rates to begin with?

A further 'bee in my bonnet' is engendered by the involvement of United Way
in vetting these folk. United way provides a valuable service, but they
also retain a 15 percent off-the-top fee to assist with the costs of the
office and paid staff they have. One might think that the best people to
'vet' (the main question seems to be so you need help paying your hydro
bill?) problem customers, might be a department at Hydro itself - you
are involved before, and after, no? At the very least you might be able to
assist, correct that ... WE might be able to assist 15 percent more of

I would like to congratulate your PR department on their valiant effort to
con your customers into thinking you have our best interests at heart. If
that were the case you would have been negotiating a rate reduction with the
government instead of 'freezing rates' in return for an up-the -road-

Kevin Quinn Owen Sound

PS: CC to Premier Wynn - she seems much in the dark as anybody not paying
your rates would be. If you reply, I'll post your response on my blog. 

Monday, September 25, 2017

Canada and Ukraine

UPDATE:  Another Ukrainian arms dump goes 'kablooie'!  A day after somebody tried to assassinate a 'dissident' leader in Donetsk.  Co-inky-dink?  Who knows?  Canada better 'pitter-patter' on their free 'bang-bang!

This past weekend after a meeting with Poroshenko the  ("peace") President of Ukraine, Canada's Justin Trudeau announced that his government was giving the green light for the export of restricted weapons to that benighted land.

This in counterpoint to the US announcement that it would not be arming the Ukraine.

A decent overview of the Canada-Ukraine  relationship  was written by  Jim Miles for Global Research

Global Research Site

Here's his article:

Poroshenko and Trudeau: Canada’s Ukrainian Attitude

"“We continue to stand with Ukraine against the illegal illegitimate incursion of Russia into Ukrainian territorial sovereignty and their attempts to destabilize Ukraine economically and many other ways,” Trudeau said. CBC, September 22, 2017.  

The Canadian government operates under as many double standards as that of the U.S. and its other NATO allies.  Russia did not invade Donbass, but more than likely supplied the rebel defenders with equipment, (much as the U.S. does globally). And what were they rebelling against, you dare not ask?
Well, they rebelled against the U.S. covert actions against the democratically elected government of Yanukovich, not wanting the newly installed neonazi Maidan strongmen (e.g. Arseniy Yatsenyuk) to control their region of the country. Further, the same bunch also used language that indicated they wished for ethnic cleansing and even genocide – Yulia Tymoshenko, the new revived darling of the western backed government, called for their complete destruction. The criminal Saakashvili (wanted for crimes in Georgia, his home state) is attempting to do something now that he has returned to Cherkasy in the geographical centre of Ukraine, another CIA sponsored overthrow of their first internationally illegal operation?
The Minsk agreement is an agreement signed between Donetsk-Luhansk on one side and Ukraine on the other, with France and Germany as co-signees – not the Russians. The agreement calls for unconditional ceasefire, withdrawal of heavy weapons from the front line, release of prisoners of war, and constitutional reform in Ukraine. All of these are dependent on the Ukraine government in Kiev to act upon (not Russia) and they have not acted on any of them.
Heavy weapons have not been withdrawn and continue to fire daily and nightly from the front line into the Donbass region, mostly at civilian targets. Some prisoners were exchanged, but many from the Minsk side were simply civilians rounded up to use as ‘trade’. There has been no constitutional reform from the Ukrainian Rada.
The current desire to place peacekeepers inside Donbass is a non-starter for Donbass residents who have suffered under continual artillery fire since the Minsk agreement was signed. If the peacekeepers were on the ceasefire line, that might be acceptable, but for Poroshenko that obviously recognizes that the real problem is internal rather than with Russia.
Canada’s integrity
So where else is Canada concerned about territorial integrity? Hmmm, perhaps Syria, with its support for U.S. actions against Assad – nominally against terrorism, but the intelligent broad reader would know that the real target is Assad astride a critical oil route (as well as having ongoing troubles with Israel, the country that illegally annexed the Golan Heights, an action that the Canadian government never criticizes.)
Or perhaps Libya? Canada was one of the lead brave bombers that destroyed that country, aggravating the ISIS terror nexus, aggravating the immigrant problem to the EU, once again supporting U.S. international criminal actions under the false accusation of genocide (there wasn’t any, Gaddafi was fighting against ISIS affiliates in his eastern provinces).
Or maybe Yugoslavia/Serbia, where once again the brave Canadian bombers destroyed civilian infrastructure and more in order to carve apart another country that did not fit the U.S. definition of what a country should be – that is, subservient to the U.S., as Canada is.
Trudeau and cohorts would of course cry out that Crimea is an obvious illegal international intervention. But consider….Crimea had always wanted independence from Ukraine ever since the fall of the Soviet Union. Twice they voted for it, twice they were denied it by Ukraine, and Russia at that time was to weak to do anything to assist them (remember originally Crimea had been ‘gifted’ to Ukraine by Khrushchev).
When the U.S./Yatsenyuk team overthrew the duly elected (if corrupt) government, the Russian forces already in Crimea blocked any attempts of the Ukraine towards violent actions such as happened at the Maidan, in Odessa, and in Donbass. Really they should be thanked for the prevention of another area with a large loss of life due to U.S. imperial desires (sort of like they should be thanked for destroying most of ISIS in Syria, you know, the Saudi backed group the U.S. covertly supports).
It also became known that U.S. warships were bound for the Crimean port of Sevastopol, an action prevented by the quick move of the Russian forces stationed there. What would have happened if the U.S. had arrived first, once again violating an international boundary – well of course, the sycophantic Canadian government would have lauded the action, while the Ukrainian forces rampaged against all things Russian in Crimea – which is most of it.
Following that a referendum was held to know if the people wished to join with Russia. The vast majority said yes, not at gunpoint as the western MSM wished to argue, and the Russian Duma accepted the request. Peaceful, no lives lost, and Crimea is better off than the rest of Ukraine and the Donbass.
Trudeau can lament that all he wants, there is no way Crimea will voluntarily return to Ukraine. But as long as the U.S. wants it, so long as the domestic Ukrainian lobby wants it, so the lament will continue.
Economic destabilizing
If the actions of the countries involved are looked at closely, the main economic destabilizing factor for Ukraine has been its own actions. It was Ukraine that blocked coal shipments from Donbsas. It was Ukraine that stopped the farmers and citizens of Kherson from trading with Crimea. It was Ukraine that knocked down power lines to Crimea, and cut of water to Crimea as well as parts of Donbass. It is Ukraine that continues to shell civilian structures in Donbass (water pumping stations, power stations, railways, schools, hospitals et al) causing serious economic damage to that region. Donbass has not responded in kind, and has withdrawn its heavy weapons from the contact line.
Ukraine itself has devolved into familiarity, with various oligarchs controlling the political, industrial, and financial actions both domestically and internationally that have ruined much of what little the Ukrainian people had. Factories are closing (lack of coal, lack of orders, for the latter a significant part being industries that used to sell equipment to Russia). The war effort of Kiev against Donbass is itself a costly affair, both in human lives and in economic losses to the economy.
Canada’s Ukrainian attitude
Canada’s Ukrainian attitude – that is its anti-Russian attitude – is a combination of both domestic politics as well as its subservient role to U.S. interests via NATO. The ultimate U.S. goal is to deconstruct if not destroy Russia, to make it part of the U.S. empire as it tries for global hegemony. Unfortunately for the world it is that very U.S. imperial desire that has wreaked havoc across many countries on all continents of the world.
Personally, I support the actions of Russia in Syria, an area where they are operating within international law, as opposed to the U.S., Canada and all the other uninvited nations fighting – theoretically – against terrorism. Given the global method that the U.S. uses to destabilize nations – through economics (sanctions, embargoes et al) combined with covert military means that frequently become overt military means – I support the growing positive relations between Russia and China and their efforts at building infrastructure and economic relationships across Eurasia (and Africa and Latin America), without using the military.
That of course is another reason for Ukraine being used as it is – to keep Eurasia from developing independence from the U.S. economic system and the reserve currency status of the US$. With Ukraine as another puppet U.S./EU/NATO government, it will be easier to try and block the Chinese BRI (Belt and Road Initiative). That then spreads globally to U.S. actions in Syria, Iran and anywhere else in the Greater Middle East where Canada plays its supporting role in all things imperial. After all it’s only natural – the U.S. and Canada are children of the once greatest colonial-settler imperial nation in the world, the U.K.
In short then, Canada’s Ukrainian attitude is supported by its internal Ukrainian cohort and more broadly by its warmongering imperial backing of U.S. adventurism to capture…well, the world.
Featured image is from Radio Canada International.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Barnum is gone, the Circus Continues.

Today sad tales of current and impending storm damage has been knocked off the media awareness table by breaking news that Facebook admits lying!!!

Lying about what you might ask?  Well lying to reporters who accused it some months ago of positing advertisements that may have been damaging to the Clinton election campaign.  To-day Facebook admits, that after checking yep they did post some ads and that, guess what' it's "likely" Facebook was paid for the service by ... don't hold your breath ... Russians!  And not just ordinary Russians, the Russians who masterminded the leak that sunk the big lady.

So while Trump was hoping that the circus ringmastered by the former head of the FBI was just going to subside to nothingness - a troupe of clowns bust into ring number three,. Egged on by the mental midgets, the 'performers' in the other two rings are gussying-up for a reprise of 'Putin dunnit' and we elected a phony Prestidink.   The 'troubles' continue to return like a gal with a grabbed  pussy.

If he wasn't in a position to nuke the Norks as a distraction from it all,  it might almost be funny.  Trump might just be thinking that a limited nukuler strike might be acceptable to the Chinese and Russians who border the area. Especially of it was a sneak attack and they didn't have much time to get offended by it. A 'fait accompli' worked for Putin in Crimea,  why wouldn't a couple of megatonnes on Pyongyang  get met with the same international indifference? Hell they could even sanction the USA for a year or two and USAID would help the new regime rebuild. Sometimes you just MUST do things that people aren't cheering about.

Assad among the Syrians he tyrannizes.
America plays while America burns

And 'Juggalos', where would America be without its "Society of Klowns"? Not in as 'free and liberated' a place as the US government and security agencies would like. They're a traitorous 'gang'.

Wednesday, September 06, 2017

ISIS on the SKIDS?

Since Bob Dylan wrote the song,  Americans have been entranced by 'ISIS' - the all-wummin chief goddess of ancient Egypt and the head-lopping semi-political threat to world peace that loons so large in its 'world interests' these days.  It seems that that creation of the 'Arab Spring' (TM) - Arabs willing to 'rise up' and do to each other and their countries what only a handful would do when encouraged by the invading forces of Iraq and Afghanistan, are the single 'positivity' to emerge from America's centennial Asia pivot. They're 'bad guys' doing to 'worse guys' what America needs to be done.

But those who have done so much are now in trouble.

And now they need some help - not the Arab ones, they can go twist - but the real ISIS - the ones who will generate the next decade's worth of security funding - the thousands and thousands of 'foreign fighters' who flocked into ISIS training camps, learned jihad and small unit tactics and are now poised to do to Europe and all points west what they've done to Syrian and Iraq.   But they need to escape Assad's trap in Syria.

Enter the greatest farce for good on earth and its third 'prong' of the modern military assault, the vertical insertion - in this case vertical evacuation. Which is reportedly what US choppers are being used to do -  extract ISIS fighters from south central Syria and replace them with Syrian 'Freedom Fighting' forces. A win-win situation -  ISISs live to fight another day and the anti-Assad coalition picks up some new territory to be used to balkanize Syria.

A new fly in the ointment appeared this week when US forces operating in central Raqqa province in Syria were reportedly attacked by CIA-armed Syrian Free Army forces, operating with the Turks. These forces were greeted coldly when they first appeared in Syria,  and more lately have been demonstrated to be importing increased supplies of heavy vehicles - supposedly to turn over to Kurdish forces.  Reports that the FSA forces working with the Turks are virtually useless for operations but provide a 'cover' for Turkish forces being in Syria ( to support anti-Assad forces and to do something to prevent a Syrian Kurdistan along the southern border). The US is currently operating with the Kurds in Raqqa - something the Turks would rather not see.

               Watch Joe Biden at 10:12 - "It's was all our pals" ... and America didn't know???

At the same time US spokespeople are blaming Assad for them having to take out the ISIS fighters being renditioned out of the Lebanon front.  These aren't good enough bad guys or, more likely America's best bad guys like those mentioned above - so they qualify for some airborne termination.  The claim is that a number of them have been eliminated when they get out of the blast radius that might hurt the beautiful babies in the buses with them.

Get 'im while he's squattin'.

                                                  Rockin' & Rollin' - Real Mercs

The Thinking Man's War

As America comes up to the 50th anniversary of it signal 'failure to win ' a war, the Vietnam experience is being re-eviscerated, This time it's being compared to modern war and how we don't seem to be winning the War on Terror either.

Ken Burn's has, supposedly, done to Vietnam what he did for the US Civil War - humanized it, uplifted it artistically, morally, and historically as a 'high point', and not a low point in American history.  Study groups and academics are churning out new looks at the men and the moments when either America 'shone through' or 'went to a darker side'.  Most of the emphasis is, of course, on shining through.  There is this piece from 'War on the Rocks' written by doctoral student Jon Askonas

The Heroic Leader and the Better War From Vietnam to Afghanistan

America is 'gridding its lions'  to do "what must be done" to "de-nuclearize" North Korea.  That's increasingly looking like the kind of thing that had to be done to Afghanistan , Iraq , etc - only possibly even worse, as it could be the 'Norks' might 'nuke' one of our 'regional' allies - or shell the heck out of Seoul. A nuclear first strike is probably a 'coffee and biscotti' topic down in the War room - particularly getting the nuclear neighbors 'on-side' for letting the good guys do that.

What level of 'getting for letting' would be indicated in order to ensure against General Dreedle just 'going nuts' and getting 'the inevitable' done at the same time?  Trump would have to send Melania as a 'human shield' to Moscow and Ivana to Beijin or Shanghai with a couple of her kids. While Trump might want them to take a couple of the Obama administration,  or a few DARC's - Putin wouldn't trust Trump as far as a B-2 Ghost could 'toss' the new GenX tactical-nukes. The Chinese are just 'saying' not much and 'doing' even less.

But so what?  North Korea has been threatening world peace since it caused that post-war police action at the behest of Uncle Joe.  Since then, all it has done is require the presence of a couple of US army divisions and an east Asian air force,  standing-by to guard the SORKs and their Parallel. Sure there were a couple of post-war 'close calls' but America has been a buttress against talking peace with commies and much interested in changing the Nork regime.

What is happening now in Korea is just a logical extension of what has been SOP there for 70 years,   'modified' by America's recent humanitarian rambustuousness. After Bushco the Second decided that Clinton made 'too sweet a deal' to get the NORKs  to discard their nuclear industry, the Kims watched him 'go to work' in western Asia and thought, 'Should he ever get out of that quagmire,  the east might really be red - with blood. Best have something in the arms locker to make the shaolin warrior-monks tug a little longer on the prepuce of fortitude.'

It took the Koreans an administration and a half to become really terrifying and they're (or we're) turning the 'skeer' into a  'national emergency'.  Americans are being treated to how Israelis feel living under a Gazan rocket barrage - or the thought of one.  We're giving the Israelis  the tools they'll need to do their 'jobs', so why should we leave ourselves out of 'the danger' or 'the solution'?

We can take some comfort that, for all the hoo-hah and rattling sabres,  if push comes to shove,  it won't be on the UN's dime or with the UN's blessing - America is going to have to 'go commando' on the NORKs on its own - and take the risks of a nuclear conflagration. For,  without some 'jaw-jaw', the NORKs are going to 'eat grass',  as Putin said, rather than disarm themselves in front of American threats and aggression.  There is nothing in it for them to quit  and Trump Inc is too dumb to realize that.

Nuclear tests 1945 to 1997: We had this stuff stopped and we started 'missing it'?

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Privatize All that Risk

Ma Nature dealt the USA another blow when hurricane Harvey, first of all smacked into Texas and lingered there to flood out the city of Houston.  How fortunate, then, that the State of Texas had been considering some amendment to insurance claims legislation and just so happened to have a law going into effect on the coming first of September.  It didn't take long for people to see rising water and recall that legislation,  before the social media lit-up with warnings that people were about to get screwed.

In order to qualify for damage during the current situation the claim has to be filed in writing, by Friday, specifying exactly what damages were being claimed.  After that no claims for current damage were to be accepted.

National Flood Insurance    A government program that lets people build on a flood plain.

America has had some notable devastations in its history and it has grown up a healthy insurance industry to ameliorate the damage from those things.  Generally,  the insurance industry thrives, most often paying out far less than it takes in, adding investment value to its holdings and sharing some profit with investors. Everything usually goes just great,  unless there is a 'run on the corporation ' in terms of claims. The last significant hurricane, Katrina, did exactly that and the damage from that is far from being repaired - but the insurance industry survived.

The Dirty Dems will screw thinks up (hopefully)  It took three years to get legislation passed to assist the New Jersey clean-up - Republicans didn't go for the idea.

Some of the industry 'biggies' were almost 'taken under' by damage claims and the industry by and large reacted badly to its long-term customers. The Gulf oil spill added more claims the industry didn't want to pay. So where there's a tragedy - there is charity and the public purse - if insurance is involved there are higher rates, across the board,  to cover the "loss".

 When such things happen the insurance industry goes into 'self-protection' mode scouring the files for defaulted policy holders, examining claims in such a way that damages could be ascribed to non-covered causes, or by joining in the great calls for charity to help ordinary people rebuild.  It is far easier for insurance corporations to toss all the damage to the public purse and private charity.  In the meantime premiums for everybody take an up-tick (that will never actually go down again) . Texas if the focus for another 'fleecing of the suckers'. Let's see what happens with flood and hurricane damage  insurance.

That clean-up's gonna cost ya extra. There's a law requiring that inflated wage rates be applied to government funding in emergency situations. But apparently there may not be enough construction workers .

Not to be outdone,  valiant little EUkrainia, or at least the Ukrainian 'cowboys' of Texas,  are helping get some millionaires' dumps back into full service. Head's up Mr. Trump. We are still needing better weapons to kill the russians.  Please help us help you?

Oligarch helps Harvey clean up

Saturday, August 26, 2017

I'm Gonna Huff, and I'm Gonna Puff ...

And he'll wind-up blowing North Korea too.

Donald Trump is reported by some media to have responded to the North Korean threat to' make the US pay' for its new sanctions program.  while everybody else on earth views the North Koreans as all talk and very little effective shelling, Trump had to respond in in kind - threatening an American response of "fire and fury",   this after US 'scientists' conceived that the North Koreans had advanced miniaturization processes in hand and had, in fact, produced an atomic warhead small enough to fit into the nose of the artillery rockets they have been firing into inner space of late.  Is it now also believed that those rockets, if fired on the same kind of trajectory as most other ICBMs,  could travel as far as Chicago.

Other US agencies were announcing a willingness to talk to North Korea if they promised to stop launching missiles.  And yet others were taking some delight in the prospect of costing  North Korea  a billion dollars a year in truncated exports - essentially we are told the USA was shutting down the North Korean sea food industry - as well of course as enduring they will be blackballed by anybody peddling weapons or electronic technology. So I guess when the gargantuan TV on Kim il Sung square goes on the blink, they'll be scrambling for some circuit boards and switches. That  should serve them right!

When the Norks actually did stop launching more missiles (at least the ones they said they were planning to shoot towards Wake)  the CinC congratulated them on being "wise" (good cop) , the Sec State (bad cop) said he'd be willing to talk but that it would take "a little more" something from the Norks.  They gave three short-range rockets as a reply (but they all 'failed' (yay!))

One has to wonder what, in all this,  did the North Koreans do to 'break the agreement' they had made with Clinton's America?  That saw them go from "world threat" to "world charity case" in less than three years. It also saw them allow US technicians to  'assist' in dismantling their sole nuclear reactor and, as far as was evident by inspection, stop developing Uranium towards making a weapon.  George Bush moved into the White House and before the dust settled on the WT complex,  the Norks were again "pariahs" and "threats" and the US was reneging on whatever Clinton had  agreed to do.

A Nork Nuke funny

They started work again. rebuilding their reactor and,  by the time Obama took over the fear mongering,  they had detonated a real bomb. Since then, 'the threat' has only gotten worse, exacerbated perhaps by the thought that , if they kept it up,  they might be tempted to nuke America rather than Seoul,  or Tokyo.   To-day, according to Trumpco, they can. And the US military, we were told last week waits only for the go signal.

When you Google "North Korea Nuke" this is the first image that isn't a 'real' rocket photo or a cartoon.  Even this is a photo=montage creation - for,you see, there is precious little evidence of Pyong yang's Nukes, either.   Hopefully that's enough to stop a war , as well  as to start one?

The 'situation' for Long Dong Clinton

The question remains - how lucky do we feel?

Gone from America's media is Syria - a perfectly good peoples' rising against tyranny has gone 'poof'.  Oh sure there is still stuff happening over there. The USAF is custom-bombing Raqqa, the Marines are bringing in equipment 'for themselves' (and the Syrian Kurds). But things have gone to hell in a handcart down in the Jordanian border - where a little incident (two weeks ago) involving some 'retreating' freedom fighters being 'ambushed' trying to cross into Jordan,  parlayed itself into a fight between factions and, a few days ago,  a fairly significant desertion (with all their equipment) by one group of America's 'anti-Assad' heroes.

So far,  whatever agreement about Syria that Trump made with Putin seems to be holding. and while it does,  the Assad forces are making significant inroads in blocking future coalition moves to 'grab territory', while putting some significant dents in ISIS land.  It would appear that Assad is moving toward the relief of Deir ez Zor  and clearing the rest of the Iraq border.   But none of this matters to American news sources for the news isn't good. They need another good 'gassing' while somebody still remembers the hokum about the last one. (actually there was an attempt again to launch an 'Assad dunnit' news story.  This once complete with the standard gasping babies and water hose decontamination procedures - flopped.  It didn't make the front page anywhere, maybe even not onto the 'beautiful baby- cruise missile strike calculator'.

Meanwhile America has shifted focus to considering a bunch of 'initiatives': somebody's got the military option for Venezuela out for a 'boo'.  'Defensive' lethal weapons ( how are they different from offensive lethal weapons?)  are 'on the table' for EUkrainia.  And just to show how much we care , the NATO contingent ( un-armed eh?) marched in EUkraine's national independence day military parade. Hopefully the Ukrainian 'elite' units (they didn't seem to be lacking much lethal equipment)  were around for the post-parade party, before shipping-out for some 'blooding' in the 'ostfront'.   The message for Putin 'ist klaaar' - Barbarossa only sleeps.


One of the side stories coming out of the Nork's threat to whirled piece is the answer to the question "How'd they do that?'  The answer being,  they bought the rocket technology from somebody.

What somebody? Probably directed by Putin's goons,  the finger initially pointed at Ukraine - purveyor of rockets parts and engines to everybody engaged in space activity.  The Ukrainians naturally denied doing it and fingered the Russians who, it was claimed,  had three or four Ukrainian-made roman candles that they hadn't bothered to shoot upwards. The russkies must have sold them to the Norks.

To-day another double back-cover story floating out of EUkrainia with all the eyes dotted and fingers crossed:  the saga of how Ukraine duped the Norks into stealing phony rocket plans and got hem doing it on tape.

Ecce evidencia

Heil Trump!

German Propaganda

Russian propaganda

America is coming off a good week.  After a minor riot in Charlotteville, Virginia ( named after the relative of the tyrannical English monarch George III),   the USA got to look at itself up-close and personal - and it's hard to tell what exactly it saw.   Particularly if you were trying to take any lead from the leader of the nation.

As riots go it wasn't much - Wall Street has seen more violence after a market downturn. It didn't even match Moscow for 'critical mass', but somebody drove their car ( an iconic American  muscle car) into the crowd and a woman as killed. The driver,  whose Mom said he isn'y ( "He just went out for some snacks!")  was accused of being a neo-nazi and white supremacist.  His murder trial should be interested in that.

Good nazis in Ukraine

Bad nazis in Charlotteville

There were, so we are told nazi flags there, nazi helmets were there - but the biker variety and there were some cis-genitals,  in white Lacostes,  who were saying they wanted to keep America 'blank' and 'fag-free'.   There were also some 'haters' on the alter side - blacks, violent femmes and at least one Boudicca reenatctor with one bare boob and thigh-high combat boots.  Each side was laying some hurtful words and some regular bric-bat hurt on the others. Than goodness nobody as armed.

Everybody saw what happened on the news - even the Prexy - for among his other cares and worries of orifice - Norks, Afghanis and Russian 'resurfacers' - he had to take time from the dwindling daze of his holiday periods to rebut the dishonest media to point out that such 'division' was an American tradition and that both sides were "baaaaad". The press immediately 'went nuts' about him conflating peaceable icinoclasts with the jack booted sturgeons of Weimar Germany.  He should have, they clamored,  blamed the Nazis for supporting that hateful statuary.

This week they want to remove Columbus from 'Columbus Circle' in Manhattan. And they'll be doing what with the circle, giving it back to the Indians?   Like homosexuality - once you start tolerating such change you wind up supporting it and eventually promoting it.  I don't think most left wing Americans have through through what undoing a few centuries of cultural genocide has done, particularly if you live in a nation that curt its teeth on screwing the natives.  Crikey!  We could be reverting to a time when red savages might kill us all in our beds before the rowboat-jihadi invaders do!

After bloviating his way past Charlotteville Trump hied himself west for another of his patented 'resuscitation rallies' - the ones where he touches his 'base'.  There he laid down chapter and verse on all the bad guys - foreign and domestic-  and the bad stuff they'd done to him and to America.  He didn't mention his Afghan plan which might have caused some disappointment.

The subsequent 'address' to the nation which didn't involve any screaming and shouting - no need to do that if you're reading a script - and Afghanistan was as scripted as it could get. With the standard Trumpisms that conflated everything central Asian into an interlaced bag of goo and mother love and then laid down his patented 'starting NOW!'  mantra that gets him so much traction with those trying to figure out what they're supposed to be doing. At least they've been warned that what they're supposed to be doing is now overdue

Donald is big on getting friends into things. Afghanistan is a case in point. While there are now commitments from previous participants like Britain and Spain to commit a couple of hundred personnel each - to training and a re-up of sorts from those members of NATO who didn't leave America to change the mission on her own - the Germans and Italians - to hang in, the greatest response has been received from Non-NATO allies - Georgia, Ukraine, and New Zealand who are 'doubling down' on the great shows they've already made.  Thew rest of NATO is busy trying to figure out how they can spend more on their military without handing it over to defend America in Asia and now Africa.  Don't anticipate Trump showing-up to take the 'allied' march past in Kabul.

                                                                 Welcome Allies!

uniting America

uniting America