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JamesT, That's the question. Netanyahu has been able to quash opposition, and probably relishes a phony war to bolster his credibility as he's indicated on various corruption charges. What's the gap between Israeli public opinion, opposition to hawkish policy, and capability to change the course of the Likud government?
A little parallel from the business world. Companies that delay issuing earnings reports see their stock prices fall post report much more often than companies that do not delay. No news can be worse news than bad news.
To invest wisely in infrastructure, rather than building out and attempting the exponential maintenance of sprawl, a massive change in living patterns is necessary. Denser cities, emptier countryside. How do you do that, I have no idea.
TTG During the early days of the war there were lots of photos of republican guard warehouses full of personal classic and luxury cars. But they would be more associated with the shibboleth of shabiha, with the steroids and oil injected in their muscles, not real soldiers like those of the Tiger Forces. I wonder if it was pulled out of one of those (possibly by a third party) and then returned to Syrian service. It would be great if ANNA could write some backstory , I sent them a question in hopes of hitting that lottery.
"Nothing is beyond his reach (except Kiev and Vilnius.)" is an excellent line. I would claim that the Russian investigation stuff has quieted in the media, because the convertible have been converted. You can check social media and there are a lot of people who respond to any mention of Trump with "Russian sleeper cell brainwish sextape." It took Harvey to pause that material, and maybe they realized they could write about something else until all the special prosecutor stories need to be written.
There's just so much of the country where there is no economy. All those places voted sanders in the DNC primaries and seem to vote republican overall. People just want to be able to work decent jobs and live decent lives. That's a bridge too far for the parasitic financial looting class. America shouldn't have to be like Nigeria, where everyone has to crowd around the big cities in hopes of getting any employment. There's no reason for things to be so bad for so many.
Well deserved. Thank you very much for your time and effort, same to all the regular contributors.
The oil price recovery has allowed Russia's state budget to stabilize, which means their intervention, especially in its present tiny state, can continue without worry about cost. Why did they stop at the precipice of massive victory, I have no idea, there've been just a few material benefits, as far as I can tell. It has given them time to convince Iran to send more men, and it has allowed more time for some reorganization and refitting of the Syrian army. It has coincided with (Saudi led?) rerouting of foreign jihadis from Syria/Iraq to Libya/Yemen. The cessation of hostilities seemed to come with a tacit agreement for the US to swtich from pretending to engage Daesh to actually attacking them. The ISF/Hashd progress against Daesh is a big help. The Hashd winning battles while the US haughtily withholds air support is great for morale, and lets the locals see through daesh's aura of invincibility. When daesh is defeated, Syria will control its oil production again. What does Russia want? They seem to desire a united, sovereign, non islamist controlled Syria, and an end to the war. What are they willing to do to make this happen? What is Iran willing to do? What are the US/Turkey/Saudi willing to do to achieve the opposite? There was such a golden moment, when Saudi was bogged down in Yemen, when Aleppo was on the verge, I would like to hear their explanation for their decision.
They really miss the plot. In seeking for a single remark to mark as "beyond the pale" or "this time he's gone too far" they imagine an audience of people who think only terms of immediate msm 'optics.' They should understand that it's too late for that sort of manipulation. Trump fans won't be appalled by this remark, because they don't fundamentally respect the institution of the judiciary. They've been told since the 70s that "activist" judges are subverting the popular will. Democrats cheered for judicial usurpations of various widely supported, but bigoted, laws, and in response, reactionaries groomed a generation of their own lawyers to overturn the popular will in their favor. Eventually they filled the ranks, and the huge capital outlay of scholarships and law school endowments paid off. Citizens united, the Roberts court, the constant bizarre decisions of 2nd circuit, profitable judgements happen daily. Laws should be made by elected representatives of the people, those representatives should serve citizens rather than money, and the best interests of citizens should be the first and last concerns. The "optics" focused campaign of Hillary Clinton, with its naked pandering to any interest group that sits before her, is fundamentally disdainful and anti anti-democratic. Shuffling the words used about policies that people don't want, until those people can be temporarily tricked, is something we would have associated with totalitarian states not a horribly long time ago. She has the same disgust for the common people as hereditary royalty. Hillary wants to be allowed to reign, and her courtiers are filled with hate for anyone who opposes her, for any reason. People feel her disgust, and will happily vote for someone nakedly speaking the opposite of her words. If those statements are bigoted and horrible, even better, catharsis in the face of constant half truth and misrepresentation from the msm. They know Clinton and the associated political/media class fundamentally do not respect them and do not care if they live or die. Violating their norms is only positive for Trump.
Toggle Commented Jun 6, 2016 on The Mexican "Race?" at Sic Semper Tyrannis
Richard Sale The Big Short is a good story, but it's fundamentally misleading. I'll paraphrase Yves Smith to spare you block quotes. The 'big short' wasn't a heroic trade, it was a series of actions that turned what would have been a serious problem echoing the savings and loan scandal into a global crisis that nearly killed several of the most important capital markets. Her book about the crisis and the economics that led to it, Econned, is very good. I think it's important, when considering these things, to step back and see that these pieces are all part of a larger puzzle. Outsourcing, cutting wages, stealing pensions, races to the bottom over tax breaks, pushing debt on everyone, are all part of a strategy of accumulation. Once there, we can reject these dogmas and do what needs to be done for the betterment of the nation and all its citizens.
Russia's ability to analyze the situation and act prudently exposes the large contrasts between its culture and that of contemporary US. Philosophy is popularly disparaged in the United States. Reading books rather than clickbait internet junk is dismissed as well. In Russia, it's not uncommon to have read the greats, and to discuss them offhand as if they were last night's football. This puts the US at a real disadvantage. To think abstractly is a skill that must be learned and practiced. Without it, it's quite easy to slip into the combinations of spite, magical thinking, and denial that we call neoconservatism, or responsibility to protect, etc. The trend toward rhetorical brinksmanship by Kerry, continuing from Bush, is embarrassing and a sign of weakness. Obama comparing Syria to a superhero movie and ISIS to the Joker is an example of how far things have slipped, either in these people themselves or in their view of the capacity of citizens. Putin loves and regularly quotes Berdyaev, Solovyev, and Ilyin. Obama summarizes the plot of Batman movies. Nice post, I appreciated it.
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Mar 11, 2016