I keep having to say the same thing over and over: That Donald Trump said something does not in and of itself constitute proof that what he said is wrong. Today’s case in point is the proposed purchase of Greenland from Denmark.
There’s two reasons this isn’t insanity. The first is that, on its face, the offer isn’t insane.
Half a dozen times in our history, the United States has purchased land from other countries. All things being equal, it’s easier (and cheaper) than conquering it outright, so from an American viewpoint it makes good sense. From a Danish perspective, it’s one of the last of their colonial possessions, so national pride would likely (more…)
This is a study in principles of military history. It’s here because it’s relevant to modern-day American life. Follow along even if at first you can’t see why it’s relevant; I’ll explain.
Pacification: the process of inducing peace on a population, often by forcibly suppressing or eliminating hostile elements
The United States has an excellent track record fighting wars, but historically we’ve had decidedly mixed results ending them, from Vietnam to the Wars On Drugs and Terror. We’re not unique; enforcing peace on a hostile populace is not a task for which modern armies, particularly those of nations with modern sensibilites, are well suited. In ancient times, it was the custom to brutally suppress the conquered with mass slaughter and slavery, but such methods (more…)
This is not being written in response to any particular event. There was probably one today or yesterday or last week, and CNN no doubt covered it with their usual attention to detail and mechanical concern. I’m probably pretty sad about it myself. This is why I’m writing this article on a day when the headlines are about something else. It’s important to keep perspective. You can’t create effective policy and solve social problems when you’re too busy yelling or sobbing or both.
Trouble is, I’m furious. Even today, I can’t help but be furious (more…)
There is a group of people on the fringe of Fundamentalist Christianity who are guilty of an error in doctrine. Normally, I’d leave this alone; someone else’s religion is none of my business. However, this is leading them to believe things, and to say things, and sometimes even to do things, that the rest of us quite rightly find hateful. That makes it my business and yours.
I want to be clear here: I’m not trying to preach to my readers; I’m not aiming to convert people with this. My goal is simple: If you’re a person who has been confused by this error, the following article will explain it to you. If you know people who are making this mistake, this article is intended as a guide to help them understand. And, if you have heard these hateful things spoken and thus hold Christianity in contempt, perhaps this will give you reason to reconsider. (more…)
I want to be clear on this: The Epstein case is outside my baliwick.
It’s a matter of justice. So long as it remains so, it’s for courts; it’s not politics. There may be political results, and when there are I’ll discuss them. Until then… it’s not that I don’t care; it’s that I’m focused on other things. Besides, any opinion I might have on a criminal case will necessarily be uninformed (more…)
This is Hector Barajas. He served in the 82nd Airborne. He was honorably discharged in 2001. And then he was deported.
The story became major news in 2016, but it’s been a known problem for a long time: American immigration law demands the deportation of every green card holder convicted of a crime, and military service does not automatically confer citizenship. Soldiers ending their time in uniform are far more likely than average to have trouble with the law. And, until recently, the (more…)
As I recall, it all started when things at the Charlottesville protest got out of hand back in August of 2017. Violence erupted between protesters and anti-protesters, and several people were injured. Eventually, one guy snapped and rammed his car into a crowd. He was sentenced for murder the other day; he got life-plus, which is a very good thing.
The word “Nazis” was floating around all through the summer during a wave of Confederate monument removals and cemetery vandalism, but it was the day after the killing that it became widespread. The driver had expressed pro-Nazi sentiments on social media and a handful of neo-Nazis were at the protest. Donald Trump had (more…)
It’s a big photo, well-shot and finely detailed. Blow it up a little and you can clearly see: This is to the side of an open vehicle gate. It is, as we can see from other photos, at a secure parking lot. Not only does this section of fence hold nobody inside, there’s a great big wide-open hole right next to the cameraman.
If you’re unfamiliar with the subject matter, this is AOC on a promotional photo shoot from when she was first running for office. She’s seen here weeping crocodile tears for the camera outside a temporary tent city set up for the processing of migrant asylum-seekers.
The Internet is making fun of her for having posed for the pictures. Her office has issued indignant denials; that’s real emotion, they say.
Several times in the past few weeks, by several different people, I’ve been asked the following question in one form or another:
“What’s to stop Donald Trump simply refusing to accept the results of an election where he’s voted out?”
Several potential justifications or complex scenarios were presented for my consideration. In one, Trump would challenge in one or more states (such as California) on the grounds that illegal immigrants make up enough of the electorate to invalidate the results. Others, less (more…)
In point of fact, I rather think they will. Just… not now.
Let us leave aside all discussion about whether Mr. Trump deserves impeachment. There’s a widespread public belief that he does, and the present House was elected at least partly in order that he might be removed from office. In the Mueller Report, the suggestion of obstruction is enough on which to base a charge — if not in court, then at least in Congress. This plus a majority opposed is all that is necessary for him to be impeached, and any discussion of whether or not he deserves it is beside the point. (more…)