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Scene above:  Constitution Island, where Revolutionary War forts still exist, as photographed from Trophy Point, United States Military Academy, West Point, New York
 

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SEPTEMBER 2-3,  2023

A NOT-SO-GENTLE REMINDER FROM THE REAL WORLD:  We're talking about presidential primaries and they're talking about nuclear weapons.  From Reuters: 

(Reuters) - Kim Jong Un plans to travel to Russia this month to meet President Vladimir Putin and discuss the possibility of supplying Moscow with weapons for the war in Ukraine, as Russia says it is seeking closer military ties with North Korea.

In a rare trip abroad, Kim would travel from Pyongyang, probably by armoured train, to Vladivostok, on the Pacific Coast of Russia, where he would meet Putin, the New York Times reported on Monday, citing U.S. and allied sources.

While in Vladivostok, a port city not far from North Korea, the two leaders would discuss Kim's sending Russia artillery shells and antitank missiles in exchange for Moscow's advanced technology for satellites and nuclear-powered submarines, the newspaper reported.

At a time when the United States has expressed concern about growing military ties between the two countries, the news of Kim's planned visit came after Russia said it was discussing holding joint military exercises with North Korea.

"Why not, these are our neighbours. There's an old Russian saying: you don't choose your neighbours and it's better to live with your neighbours in peace and harmony," Interfax news agency quoted Russia's Defence Minister, Sergei Shoigu, as saying on Monday.

When asked about the possibility of joint exercises between the two countries, he said they were "of course" being discussed, it said.

South Korean news agency Yonhap earlier cited South Korea's intelligence agency as saying Shoigu, who visited Pyongyang in July, had proposed to Kim that their countries hold a naval exercise, along with China.

The Kremlin said last week that Moscow intends to deepen its "mutually respectful relations" with Pyongyang, one of its close Cold War allies and also one of a small handful of countries to back Russia's proclaimed annexation of parts of Ukraine in 2022.

The New York Times reported that Kim could possibly go to Moscow, although that was not certain.

COMMENT:  I'd like to see the presidential candidates concentrate more on foreign policy.  It is stories like this that hint at the future we face internationally, yet foreign policy seems to be an afterthought these days.  It is not.  It is something that can kill us, while we count economic numbers.  China must be our main concern, but China is linked with Russia and North Korea, and Iran. 

We must never allow those nations to see us as weak.  That is how wars get started.

September 3, 2023       Permalinks

 

SHOCKED!  SHOCKED, HE IS!  There is deep upset on the trendy left over a poll showing Donald Trump and Joe Biden in a dead heat.   How could this be, when Trump's destruction has been so carefully planned?  From Fox: 

ABC's George Stephanopoulos appeared stunned Sunday by a 2024 election poll showing former President Trump and President Biden tied at 46% in a hypothetical rematch, calling the findings "kind of shocking" in light of Trump's mounting legal woes.

During a segment on ABC's "This Week," Stephanopoulos brought up a Wall Street Journal poll released over the weekend showing support among Trump and Biden split directly down the middle at 46% support each if the 2024 presidential election were held today.

"It is kind of shocking in a way, that despite all of the baggage that Donald Trump carries, he’s tied with Joe Biden right now," Stephanopoulos said.

The ABC host said it appears the indictments against Trump are only strengthening his base within the GOP.

"With every passing month, with every new indictment, Donald Trump seems to be consolidating his control over the Republican Party," he told viewers.

Those surveyed in the Wall Street Journal poll were asked about the indictments against Trump, with more than 60% of Republican primary voters insisting that the multiple criminal charges were politically motivated and lacked merit. Another 78% said that Trump's actions following the 2020 election were legitimate actions to ensure an accurate vote. Just 16% said that Trump illegally attempted to prevent Congress from certifying the 2020 presidential election results.

Despite the legal troubles embroiling Trump, the survey found that 59% of Republican primary voters support the former president in the race for the White House an 11-point increase since the outlet conducted a similar survey in April.

Former Democratic National Committee chair Donna Brazile said she found the poll's findings alarming, echoing other Democrats who warned it could be bad news for President Biden.

"When I looked at that recent poll, [from] the Wall Street Journal, I said, ‘this could keep me up at night,'" she remarked.

In a separate TV interview Sunday, CNN's Jim Acosta reminded viewers that despite Trump's "four indictments…he is still tied with Joe Biden in the poll."

Larry Sabato, the Director of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia, told Acosta that the poll signals Biden has his work cut out for him heading into the 2024 election season.

"Biden has work to do," Sabato said.

COMMENT:  We should note that the election is a year and two months away.  Neither Trump nor Biden might be factors a year from now.  On the other hand, Biden's poor showing, matched against a former president under indictment, is hardly the thing the Dems can brag about.  He is a weak candidate, and his physical fitness for the job is subject to legitimate questions. 

This is just beginning.

September 3,  2023     Permalinks

 

 

AUGUST 31-SEPTEMBER 1,  2023

DID THE GOVERNOR OF CALIFORNIA FINALLY GROW UP?  Governor Newsom appears to be taking a step closer to the world of reality.  I wonder if he'll like it here.  From Fox: 

California's top state regulator that oversees utilities approved a plan to expand a controversial fossil fuel facility that Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom has vowed to shut down.

The five-member California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) voted unanimously late Thursday to increase inventory capacity at the Aliso Canyon Natural Gas Storage Facility in Los Angeles County, the agency announced. 

Under the new rules, the facility, managed by Southern California Gas Company, would increase capacity 67% to the state safety limit of 68.6 billion cubic feet.

While CPUC members and state officials reaffirmed their commitment to a broader green energy transition and to eventually shutter the facility, they explained Thursday's decision was made "as a financial hedge against potential high winter market prices."

The move could also save consumers in southern California up to $450 million on natural gas this winter.

"I want to note that this decision is being considered while we, together with other state agencies, are working with urgency on the challenge of reducing reliance on natural gas throughout the state," CPUC President Alice Reynolds said before the vote. "We do have some policy level levers that we're using on our work to transition away from natural gas.

"Climate change is bringing many unpredictable and extreme weather events. This decision will help us be more resilient to those impacts," Reynolds added. "But we are working in the transition, and we have to take into account the real-world conditions we're facing and the real-world impacts of our actions. We currently have few alternatives, especially for low-income and vulnerable communities."

COMMENT:  Ignore the pompous pronouncements.  This wouldn't have been done without Governor Newsom's permission.  Newsom will run for president next year if Biden drops out.  He needed at least one act to show, or appear to show, that he can mix with the adults.  "Look, I'm a big boy now."  His problem is that he's one of the worst governors in America.  Say "Newsom," and people think "San Francisco."  Says it all.   

September 1, 2023       Permalink

 

OH, MUST THEY?   I guess the O.J. Simpson trial just wasn't enough for those who want television news to be the new show business.  Now we will have the televised trial of Donald Trump.  Will there be awards for those companies putting on the most inventive commercials?  How about halftime-style productions during lunch hour?  I look forward to "trial parties," patterned after Super Bowl parties.  From Breitbart:

Former President Donald Trump’s criminal trial in Fulton County, Georgia, will be televised and live-streamed on the internet, Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee announced Thursday.

McAfee will also allow reporters to use their computers and cell phones inside the courtroom so long as they are not used to record the trial. McAfee’s announcement is aligned with Fulton County policy that broadcasts judicial proceedings on its YouTube channel.

Georgia’s rules are the opposite of those in New York and the federal court system, where Trump faces three other criminal cases. Cameras are not permitted in New York’s court system or federal courtrooms. However, a New York court granted an exception for photographers when Trump appeared in court in April for his arraignment.

Trump and 18 others were indicted in a 98-page, 41-count indictment handed down by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis in August.

As Breitbart News reported:

The indictment does not fundamentally concern actions taken in Georgia, but describes words spoken and actions taken by the Trump campaign in a variety of other states in their efforts to cast doubt on the controversial 2020 presidential election.

The indictment charges several defendants with crimes merely for making statements that argued the 2020 election was stolen. It claims that actions such as holding public hearings in Pennsylvania amounted to acts in furtherance of an illegal conspiracy.

Trump is facing 13 counts in the Georgia case, including a violation of the state’s RICO law. Trump surrendered himself into custody last week, where he was booked and had his mugshot taken for the first time out of the four criminal cases he faces.

COMMENT:  I demand that Judge Lance Ito, of O.J. fame, be brought in as an expert commentator.  And Judge Judy.  I want her input. 

And as the excitement builds, and major film stars compete for who will play Donald Trump in the movie, the Chinese are building hypersonic missiles to sink our navy, and no one seems to care.

September 1, 2023        Permalink

 

 

AUGUST 29-30,  2023

THE MOST WATCHED GOVERNOR'S RACE THIS YEAR:  It is in Kentucky, which votes for governor this November, and there are important developments.  From Fox: 

EXCLUSIVE: Daniel Cameron, Kentucky's Republican attorney general and nominee for governor, is upping his attacks against incumbent Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear's handling of violent crime across the commonwealth following a major police group flipping its endorsement to the GOP challenger.

Speaking with Fox News Digital just weeks from Election Day in the most highly anticipated race of the year, Cameron touted the Kentucky State Fraternal Order of Police's (FOP) endorsement flip after endorsing Beshear in 2019, arguing it was the result of the "havoc" unleashed by the governor on Kentucky communities when it came to violent crime.

"I think the Kentucky state FOP, which is the largest law enforcement organization in the state, has shown great confidence in our campaign and our commitment to standing up for our law enforcement community, which is in contrast with Andy Beshear, who only does it when it is convenient," Cameron said.

"This governor unleashed havoc on our communities in many ways. Here's a governor that in 2020 let out 1,700 criminals from jail — and a third of those recommitted offenses in our communities," he said, referencing Beshear's early release of some inmates amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The FOP's flip to Cameron, although significant, isn't the first time the group has shifted its support between parties. In addition to Beshear in 2019, the group also endorsed the Democratic candidate for governor in 2015 and 2007, but switched to the Republican candidate in 2011. The group's endorsed candidates in 2011 and 2015 were not elected.

Cameron told Fox that law enforcement wanted "leadership in the governor's office that's going to back them not only in word, but also in deed," and said he would implement policies aimed at recruiting and retaining officers, as well as establish a Kentucky State Police post in Louisville, the largest city in the commonwealth.

Last month, Cameron unveiled a 12-point public safety plan to rein in crime across Kentucky, which includes, in addition to his previously mentioned policies, pursuing the death penalty for someone who murders a police officer, reforming the parole board, increased penalties for drug traffickers who kill Kentuckians, and passing a standalone carjacking statute.

When asked about the plan, Cameron said he wanted it to be a model for other states across the country dealing with increased crime, including Democrat-led states like California, New York and Illinois. 

COMMENT:  Cameron is an African-American, running in a border state.  If he can flip the governorship, he will instantly become a national figure and a contender for vice president on the Republican ticket. 

Watch this race closely.  If our side wins, our morale will soar.

August 30, 2023       Permalink

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 "What you see is news.  What you know is background.  What you feel is opinion."
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