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Showing posts from June, 2019

The American Taliban

The Handmaid's Tale has been long on images and short on story ever since completing the first season.  Part of the problem is that the writers ran out of story.  Margaret Atwood only took her distopian vision of America's future so far and now the writers are having to come up with ideas of their own.  Not knowing how many seasons they can milk out of the premise of an American Taliban, they are taking their time, moving at a snail's pace, trying to expand the territory a bit without drifting too far away from the central theme.  So, we get a lot of plot twists to keep us off guard, hoping that suspense will keep viewers tuning into the Hulu series.

At its core, Atwood imagined a state where the religious conservatives staged a coup and toppled the American government.  They installed their own version of a Shining City Upon a Hill, which to this point I thought Boston was the capital.  This is where it all began nearly 400 years ago when Governor Winthrop declared the c…

The Puppet Master

You ever wonder what Russian hackers got from the Republican National Committee?  We were led to believe they got into old accounts and it wasn't anything damaging in the way of information, which never saw the light of day.  Yet, three years later here are the Republicans pretty much in lockstep with the President on every issue, particularly those that favor Russian interests.  Mitch McConnell was effectively able to lift sanctions on one of Putin's most notorious oligarchs at the beginning of the year, resulting in a cushy investment in Kentucky.  However, it seems there was a lot of pressure on him and other Republicans to lift these sanctions from the outside.

Russia has not only severely compromised the President, but to one degree or another appears to have compromised Republican Congresspersons.  Despite the repeated calls to provide funding to protect the 2018 midterm elections from unwarranted hacking, Republicans deferred and continue to defer on the issue.  It see…

Bomb, bomb bomb Iran

Iran is the country many Americans want to bomb.  Back in 2008, Old Mackie was even singing a tune in this regard on the campaign trail.  It's been 40 years since the Islamic Revolution in Iran and yet we still seem to know nothing about what is going on in the country.  This despite a succession of presidents who to one degree or another have tried to reach out to the US to put hard feelings behind.

As much as we would like to think there is no reason to forgive Iran for the hostage crisis that stretched out over 400 days between November 1979 and January 1981, the US never apologized for shooting down an Iranian passenger plane in 1988, during the peak of the Iran-Iraq War.  The US was backing Iraq at the time, and a naval commander mistook the passenger plane for a fighter jet, firing two surface-to-air missiles that killed all 290 passengers on board.  By contrast, all 52 American diplomats and citizens were eventually released unharmed.

There is plenty of bad blood on both s…
"Trump trails most major Democratic candidates in head-to-head polls"

This is not just bad news for the president but also for his top rival Joe Biden, who until now had been billed as the only Democratic candidate capable of beating Trump.  Internal polls in the Trump campaign also revealed him trailing Biden in key states like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, which he won in 2016.  Trump was furious and had the pollsters dismissed.

If there is any consolation, Trump started the 2016 campaign well behind Hillary Clinton, as were all the Republican candidates at the time, yet emerged the victor.  The only problem now is that he has a record and can no longer rhetorically ask, "what have you got to lose?"

As it turns out, a lot, which is why you see so many Democratic candidates running for office this time around, with most of them qualifying for the first round of debates later this month, even latecomers like Bill de Blasio and John Hickenlooper.

They were all made t…

Trump Lightyear

To Mars and Beyond

How does one deal with the Artless Dodger?  No sooner did I post a piece on his Memorial Day gaffes than he provides us with 25 startling new quotes from an interview with Laura Ingraham before a ceremony honoring D-Day at Normandy.  Then he offers up the mind-blowing quote that the moon "is part" of Mars, all but quashing the "great deal" he strong-armed Mexico into making on border security, which he apparently doesn't feel goes far enough, leaving "very profitable" new tariffs on the table.  This is all within a two-week news cycle!

Even for the Donald that is more misdirection than usual, leaving everyone dizzy with expectation as to how he outdoes himself now.  The NASA quote takes top prize.  Apparently, he was miffed that Neil Cavuto thought going to the moon was no big deal.  Like didn't we do that decades ago?  Trump can't stand being made to feel small, so he lashed out at NASA for not thinking bigger, like going t…