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Friday, June 30, 2017

Progressives and Their Tom Thumb's Blues

Taking a brief break from my duties as tour guide for our visiting Spanish guests. Took them yesterday over the mountains to visit the beautiful San Juan Capistrano Mission. I figured Spaniards would like to see a Spanish-built church. We had magnificent weather and a picturesque drive on a winding mountain road. They seemed to like it judging from the hundreds of pictures they took. California has a great and colorful history; it's future? Hmmm . . . maybe not so much.

Anyhow, the Diplowife has taken our guests on a shopping expedition, and I sit alone, supervising the washing machine as it churns away, and listening to Bob Dylan. I had forgotten how good he is. He deserved that Nobel prize. In particular I love his "Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues." The music has a Leibner/Stoller "Smokey Joe's Cafe" feel, but the real magic is in the words. Dylan's use of words is akin to that in the poems of Gertrude Stein; he uses them more for their sound than their meaning to tell the story and set the mood. Jazz with words--and the harmonica is great. Brilliant stuff.
When you're lost in the rain in Juarez when it's Easter time, too/
And your gravity fails and negativity don't pull you through/
Don't put on any airs when you're down on Rue Morgue Avenue
They got some hungry women there and they really make a mess outta you/
Now, if you see Saint Annie, please tell her thanks a lot/
I cannot move, my fingers are all in a knot/
I don't have the strength to get up and take another shot/
And my best friend, my doctor, won't even say what it is I've got. 
Sweet Melinda, the peasants call her the goddess of gloom/
She speaks good English and she invites you up into her room/
And you're so kind and careful not to go to her too soon/
And she takes your voice and leaves you howling at the moon...
Gotta love Dylan's description of "Sweet Melinda." It got me thinking about the progressives and their collective melt-down over the past few days and weeks. President Trump has done something remarkable with his tweets, his speeches, his actions, and his general attitude, to wit, he's taken the progressives' voice and left them "howling at the moon."

President Trump has used words as much for setting the mood as for their actual definition. While the progressives try to parse and pick apart those words, the rest of us understand exactly what he's saying, how he's tapping into our own thoughts and letting them gush forth like a wildcat oil well.

He is leaving the progs "howling at the moon." They don't know what else to say about him, what other slanders and libels to heave in his direction, what more fake narratives and news to conjure up. Nothing seems to work. It all boomerangs.

If Trump can keep this up, he will go down as one of the great presidents. He is a revolutionary force. I am more than impressed.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Back from DC & Maybe Just a Little Too Happy . . .

Got back last night from the wedding in DC.

My number three son and a wonderfully funny, smart and very pretty lady got married at the Holy Trinity Church in Georgetown. Great wedding and lots of fun. Got to get together with some old friends, make some new ones, and act as tour guide for my wife's relatives from Spain. They loved the Smithsonian Air and Space museum (possibly the greatest museum in the world), the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and the time we spent at Ford's Theatre delving into the story of America's Civil War and the assassination of President Lincoln by a Shakespearean actor who became obsessed with killing Caesar--hmmm, sound familiar?

The weather was great, and DC, a city for which I never had any love when I worked there, was actually pleasant, clean, efficient, and even civilized. Everybody, and I mean everybody, I encountered on the street, in restaurants, in stores, at monuments, etc., was very polite, well-mannered, and helpful.

I was there for almost seven days and had not one rude or untoward experience with anybody, be they American, foreign, black, white, brown, or any other of God's brands. How can this be? Are things on the ground perhaps not really as bad as pretentious pundits declare? Is it all "fake news" a la CNN? Is the grief and conflict we see, hear, and read about in the media just the handiwork of power-mad politicians and unscrupulous "journalists" and "activists"? The Diplomad will explore this matrix and get back to you . . . and, meanwhile, enjoy yet another Trumpian victory over CNN. Gotta love it!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Operation Barbarossa and its Lessons for Today

Seventy-six years ago, June 22, 1941, Hitler launched "Operation Barbarossa," the massive invasion of the Soviet Union. It involved some 4.5 million Axis troops, over three million of them German, and within six months had placed the Nazis on the outskirts of Moscow, and, it seemed, on the verge of a total victory over Stalin's USSR. In the end, of course, it didn't turn out that way. I will not go into a military history of Barbarossa and the disaster into which it ultimately became for the Axis powers; some of the readers of this blog probably could write volumes about WWII. No, that's not the purpose of this little piece.

I began thinking about Barbarossa as I watched a couple of clips of lefty Democrats going on and on about Trump-Russia "collusion." Interesting that the American left now have sudden concerns about not just our national security, but with Russian "influence." They fret and rage that Putin colluded with Trump to thwart Hillary Clinton's bid for the White House. They fret and rage, of course, despite the lack of any evidence that such "collusion" took place.

It is worth recalling that in days not really so long ago, there was collusion between the left and the Moscow. In fact, the collusion was so close that the left was willing to accept the Molotov-Von Ribbentrop Pact without skipping a beat. Let us not forget that prior to the signing in August 1939 of that "Non-Aggression" accord between Moscow and Berlin, the left in Europe and America was vehemently anti-Nazi--remember the Spanish Civil War. Once, however, word came out that Hitler and Stalin had reached an understanding, the left switched to opposing war against the Nazis. We should note, for example, that the Communists in France, responding to orders from Moscow, gave up non-Communist members of the French resistance to the Nazi occupiers and a slow, painful death. Communists in America and Europe opposed helping the evil capitalist imperialists in London as Churchill's Britain waged its desperate and lonely war against the Nazis. All that changed in an instant when the Nazi alliance invaded the USSR. Suddenly, "We have always been at war with Eastasia Hitler" was the slogan and the left insisted we forget about the Molotov-Von Ribbentrop Pact, the invasion of Finland, the Nazi-Soviet partition of Poland, etc. Through its well-placed web of agents and fellow-travelers in the mass media, academia, and, of course, the government bureaucracy (see Senator McCarthy) suddenly the message was one of concern for national security and of the imperative need to defeat Hitler--and save the USSR.

They are at it, again.

Bernie Sanders, who honeymooned in the USSR, and his band of followers, who have never had a kind word to say about American national security, are up-in-arms about Russian "interference" in our elections. Bernie, of course, is not alone. Democrats and other assorted lefties, such as Hillary Clinton who with her husband engaged in, shall we say, some highly profitable "collusion" with Moscow, and even tried to "reset" relations with Russians, have formed a chorus demanding an "explanation" of Trump's alleged collusion with Russia, and even put out demands for Trump's impeachment. It would seem that Communist Russia, aka the USSR, was something for us to  co-exist with while the much weaker Russia of Putin is something for us to fear. We hear that Russia is taking over!

"We have always been at war with Eastasia Russia."

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Leftist Savagery Continues

On May 1, I posted a piece "commemorating" the 100 days of leftist savagery that we had seen since President Trump's inauguration. I noted that during those first 100 days,
Opponents tried to disrupt the inauguration, and have engaged in a consistent pattern of street violence and thuggery aimed at intimidating Trump supporters and trying to give the impression that the country is ungovernable unless the progressives are in charge. Nothing is off limits, including Trump's family, in this assault on the new president. Unprecedented coarseness, violence, and fake news are all arrows in the progressive quiver and being unleashed on Trump and supporters daily.
We have marched past the 100-day milestone and this leftist savagery shows no signs of abating. As the Russian collusion nonsense implodes, especially after the bizarre Comey's bizarre testimony, the lefties are going for some sort of an obstruction of justice gambit in which Trump is accused of trying to block an investigation on him which was not happening, and somehow trying to block an investigation into others by saying that he hoped it would proceed. Whole thing doesn't make sense except in the whacky world of Washington where process, crime, words, actions, leaks all become melded into some weird legalistic lawyer salad in which one can pick out any little piece of condiment one wants and say the whole salad is about that.

Even Kafka would be amazed at how people can be accused of nonsense, then be accused of debunking that nonsense, and then accused of preventing an investigation of that nonsense that was not happening in the first place. . .

What exactly is the Special Counsel investigating? He's investigating an investigation that found nothing, and is determined, it seems, to bring charges of some kind against somebody for doing nothing wrong. A sad, horrible, destructive joke, and, of course, after AG Sessions masterful appearance before the Senate, this whole thing should go away . . . but, no, no it won't . . ..

The leftist savages, not content to limit their terrorism to the faux legal/media world, have encouraged it to spill out into the real world where real people live and work and play. They have expanded and built on the savagery evinced by the BLM "movement" and the thugs from ANTIFA. We now have seen a Bernie Bro take up a weapon, and go Republican hunting on a baseball diamond in Virginia. Thank God and some brave and straight-shooting Capitol Hill cops, the only one who departed this planet was the lefty psycho. As so happens every time the lefties' narrative takes a hit, you know, the one about Trump people being violent fascists, they try to shift it to something else. Gun control is the standard fall back, and now we also are hearing that the Bernie Bro was driven to his actions by the hateful rhetoric of the Trumpsters. The hateful eliminationist rhetoric and play acting of the left and its echo chamber media, that had nothing to do with anything since that's just art and free expression. Only right-wing speech and symbols can drive people on the right and on the left to violence.

Gotta keep up, folks, gotta keep up. Confederate flags will turn ordinary people into mass murderers, but Communist and Anarchist flags, idiotic "comedians" pretending to behead the President, stage actors "assassinating" the President, a defeated and corrupt Democrat Presidential candidate talking about joining the "Resistance," well, that's just freedom at work, nothing to see here, move along, move along, the next meeting of that Resistance is in five minutes, drinks and ammo will be provided.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Questionable Decisions and an Impending Wedding

My blogging is being affected in a bigly way by the impending marriage of my number three son. He lives in DC and his wedding is on the 24th. The preparations have been immense and as we come down to the wire the Diplowife's tyranny has grown.

Today I had to do the thing I hate the most on this earth: try on clothes. Went to a local clothing store a few weeks ago, ordered a couple of suits, ties, etc., and thought that was the end of it. But no! Today I had to go try the things on and, of course, the Diplowife was unhappy with how I looked--now she notices? Alterations, fried nerves, agitation, looming deadline. . . ugh! When I left the State Department I ceremoniously trashed all my suits, ties, sport coats, dress shoes . . . I sought to live the rest of my life in sweat pant and sneaker glory.

Now to have to go back and get that stuff again . .  . well, it has ultra frazzled my already frazzled nerves and is making blogging very difficult.

Anyhow, the boy is marrying a perfectly delightful lady--she appears on FOX News as an expert on education, and works at the Heritage Foundation . .  . so, of course, she has the Diplomad Approval Stamp. She's a YUGE Trump fan, proving that not all youngsters are lost to the progressive maw.

I've been a bit discombobulated, and have made some decisions which I hope are not too questionable. I sold my 1966 Olds AND my 2015 GT Mustang. My 73 Mach 1 and my 76 Cadillac are also up for sale (Laguna Classic Cars).  Please buy them and make the Diplowife happy.

I have bought two Jeep Wranglers to console myself. They are great! Lot of fun. I am decking them out with everything I can think of, and some day, yes, some day, might actually take them off-road. The Diplowife doesn't want to hear it because, as she says, we've spent most of our married life "off-road" in places such as Pakistan, Guatemala, and Bolivia, and she's had enough dirt roads and rocky climbs to last her a lifetime. So I think my wonderfully equipped Wranglers will be confined to making COSTCO runs, but they will impress!

As an old-school fart, I have made sure that both Wranglers have six-speed manual transmissions--keeps the number of potential wanna-be drivers down. Yesterday, in fact, I was showing off one of these beauts to my neighbor when he looked inside and asked "What's that third pedal for?" This is when it was confirmed to me that my beloved Western Civilization is in a deep, deep crisis . . . "What's that third pedal for?" shall be the motto, the very leitmotif of our campaign to organize, to rally, to lead the drive to restore that Civilization to its former glory! NO automatic transmissions! No driverless cars! No hybrids! No electric cars! No power windows! OK, OK, we will accept cup holders, but that's it!

Back to something about cleaning the house for when our foreign guests arrive after the wedding. No more GSO to take care of that sort of thing . . .

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Comey Serves Up a Nothingburger with Fries and Slaw

The Comey hearing. OK, I watched the damn thing. I am trying to avoid reading the post-hearing professional punditry so that I won't be influenced by the "experts" as I offer my own amateur punditry.

I think Comey damaged his reputation further (here, here, here) and came off as a cry baby with seriously hurt feelings. More important, however, at least to my mind, the whole thing was over in the first few minutes of Comey being questioned.

OK, my checklist:

--The President does have the right to fire the FBI director;

--The President, although he has the authority to do so, did not try to halt the investigation into General Flynn and "Collusion with Russia";

--The President told the truth when he said Comey had told him that Trump was not a target of the investigation;

--The President told Comey to continue with the investigation as he wanted to know if any of his "satellites" had done something wrong;

--The investigation continues even without Comey.

So what the hell is this all about? Where's the crime? Where's the scandal? Waiter, I would like a little meat between the bread slices, please.

Now there was a big nothingburger when it comes to "Trump scandals," but there also was a large order of fries and a side of slaw thrown on our plates a bit later.

First, as many of us suspected, Comey was the leaker of the Comey "memos." He admitted it, saying he did it to provoke the creation of a Special Counsel probe into the Russia issue. That is outrageous and helps explain this ex-Director's lax attitude towards leaks. Once he wrote those memos as FBI Director, those memos did not belong to him; they belonged to the United States Government and are subject to the appropriate USG classification and use regulations. The ex-Director should be charged.

Second, he casually acknowledged what many of us also had suspected, to wit, that former AG Lynch did try to interfere in the FBI investigation into the Clinton email scandal. Lynch needs to be subpoenaed, investigated, and, if appropriate, charged with obstruction of justice. Comey's own lax behavior in the wake of the Lynch attempt to obstruct justice should also be investigated, and he should face charges.

What comes out negative for President Trump?

Simply put, he got hoisted by his and his staff's inexperience with the slippery oily ways of Washington.

As a man who grew up in the construction/real estate business, mostly in the brutal New York market, Trump knows how to deal with sharks. He knows that, in the end, 99% of the time, a deal can be struck in which both parties emerge as winners. "Come on. We're alone now. What's your bottom line?" DC is different. DC is a town of lawyers. The DC sharks tend to be wily but cowardly; they hide behind lawyers, the endless reams of legal code that choke the town, and press leaks. Everything is quasi-legal and any "slip" an outrage to be exploited by the progressive media.

You need a lawyer to do almost anything; no conversation should be held without a lawyer present. In the DC environment, Trump expressing his wish that Flynn be spared further embarrassment and prosecution after already having been abruptly dismissed from his job as National Security Advisor, turns into a lawyer gabfest. Did the President try to interfere with any investigation into Flynn? Not that I know. So he expressed his wish to see the guy not be slimed anymore, so what?

This has to stop. We have people out of work; jihadis running amok; the Norks threatening to pop nukes over Honolulu and Okinawa; the Chinese paving over the South China Sea; and Putin laughing his head off as we run around chasing our tails with these idiotic scandals.

To quote PM May, "Enough is enough!"

Sunday, June 4, 2017

London, Again

I can't write much more about this topic. It's all been said, so many, many times. The murdering SOBs have struck again in the heart of the one of the world's greatest cities. The British armed police reacted quickly and effectively, killing the three rampaging jihadis in a hail of bullets within eight minutes of the start of attack. Attack is the word: as I wrote years ago, when it comes to the Islamists, "We are under attack, when we should be at war."

Now the usual lefty proggy search for "answers" and "motives" begins. We hear, of course, the calls to avoid a backlash against Muslims because they follow a Religion of Peace. We see the lashing out at President Trump for calling again for greater travel restrictions (not a "ban") on citizens from certain jihadi-providing countries. I am sick of this script. I am sick of the teddy bears, flowers, empty "motivational" slogans, and hashtags.

PM May has boldly stated, "Enough is enough!" Really? So whatcha gonna do, Madam? What are all of our leaders going to do?

How many more deaths before the brutal reality of what we have done to our cities and societies becomes apparent? How many more must die before our governments do what governments are supposed to do: protect us from the killers, or, at least, allow us to protect ourselves.

Disgusted beyond words.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Le Président Trump dit, "Au revoir mon précieux Paris!"

And we're out!

I had begun to have doubts that he would pull the trigger. I guess I had read too much media about all the possible permutations of a possible President Trump announcement on the absurd Paris Climate Agreement (the link provided has the entire text; if you have nothing else to do, please read it. I find that the people who most support it, haven't read it.)

President Trump spoke in his usual blunt way, i.e., not a whole lot of diplo-speak,
I am fighting every day for the great people of this country. Therefore, in order to fulfill my solemn duty to protect America and its citizens, the United States will withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord -- (applause) -- thank you, thank you -- but begin negotiations to reenter either the Paris Accord or a really entirely new transaction on terms that are fair to the United States, its businesses, its workers, its people, its taxpayers. So we’re getting out. But we will start to negotiate, and we will see if we can make a deal that’s fair. And if we can, that’s great. And if we can’t, that’s fine. (Applause.)

As President, I can put no other consideration before the wellbeing of American citizens. The Paris Climate Accord is simply the latest example of Washington entering into an agreement that disadvantages the United States to the exclusive benefit of other countries, leaving American workers -- who I love -- and taxpayers to absorb the cost in terms of lost jobs, lower wages, shuttered factories, and vastly diminished economic production. 
Thus, as of today, the United States will cease all implementation of the non-binding Paris Accord and the draconian financial and economic burdens the agreement imposes on our country. This includes ending the implementation of the nationally determined contribution and, very importantly, the Green Climate Fund which is costing the United States a vast fortune.
He laid out the case for getting out of the Accord in a magnificent manner; it's well-worth reading the whole announcement.

He identified it clearly as just another progressive wealth suppression and distribution scheme, that would increase government power, diminish the economic opportunities of ordinary Americans, further burden the US taxpayer, and do nothing about the environment. It allowed YUGE polluters such as China and India waivers on just about everything for years to come, and promised India trillions of dollars in aid. It set up a bureaucratic monstrosity, some sort of UN-run Green Fund, that would administer billions of dollars to Third World countries to help them (unspecified how) fight climate change. All rubbish.

I have seen some commentators saying the President should have gone along with the Agreement because it was voluntary, and we could unwind its provisions quietly at home. Yeah, yeah. Look, I have written before about how progressives use words to change the nature of debate. They also aim at false targets, "we . . . find repeatedly that the announced target of progressive wrath is not the ultimate target. The target is altered." The real target of this sort of accord is not combating some illusory global warming or cooling. It is about increasing the power of the institutions controlled by progressives. The United States, for example, is a nation obsessed with laws. An accord such as this one, although not ratified by the Senate, would quickly find its way into our law books and spawn endless lawsuits and civil actions against firms, individuals, and government agencies not complying with the Accord. It is yet another in the endless effort to provide full employment to divisions of progressive lawyers.

Thank you, President Trump.