Friday, February 12, 2016

Iraq/Syria

Today's paper announced an agreement by the world powers for a cease fire in the disputed lands. Except ...

Yes this agreement is full of holes. Russia can still bomb the insurgents battling Syria's government troops, calling them terrorists.

Turkey, a NATO member is bombing the Peshmega, they most powerful opponent of ISIS.  The U.S. is bombing those that are left over.

This inevitability started at the close of WW 1, when the Ottoman Empire was divided up among the neighboring countries. Unfortunately, Kurdistan was dissolved and given to Iraq, Syria and Iran. This has caused a continuing war for independence  by this group that are Muslims, but not of the type approved by other sects.

Until this century old injustice is resolved,  and new borders set, there will be war in the middle est perpetually. I see Iran annexing southern Iraq, the Kurds the north and Sunni Muslims he center.

Syria is such a mess that My imagination cannot conjure u[ a solution. The world is on fire with very little leadership, other than power plays, is being featured by the world powers. God help us all.

Sunday, February 07, 2016

Saturday Debate

Governor Christie took on a Trump like attitude when he attacked Senator Rubio for staying on message, by stating it was repetitious and suggested he had no other views. He was wrong. There is great precedent for repetitious speeches

Back in 1964, an actor without any political experience started his political career running for a first term as California Governor. He gave the same speech over and over. We used to refer to it as, "The speech." He won that election and then another, bringing California back from the brink of bankruptcy. His constant referral to Lord Action's famous words, "power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts, absolutely."

He applied conservative principles, but still was able to work with Jesse Unrah (sp) and a democratic legislature. His name was Ronald Reagan. I knew him before he took office in 1966 and mc'ed a speech he gave in Santa Ana, California. He too, gave the same speech over and over. Two reasons that worked, one he touched the collective souls of the majority of voters, many of whom were democrats.

He wasn't foolish enough to think he could govern with just the far right. The John Birch Society was very active in Orange County back then, but he never caved in to their extremism.

Another example, a Democrat, John F. Kennedy, was a freshman senator who gained the voters needed because he had an outgoing personality and warmth. Senator Rubio doesn't need to change his speech and has in common Kennedy as an example of an inexperienced candidate winning and for the most part, considering his short tenure, did OK.

Rubio exudes warmth and personality that none of the other candidates have in abundance. He can win in November where the others cannot. Running him off is a guarantee of another Democratic presidency. In this time in our history, it is critical to oust the Dems, who in their eight years with Obama and Hillary as Secretary of State, has the world on fire, because the most powerful nation on earch, dithers with a program of converting this country into something less than a capitalist place where succes is up to the individual, not a federal bureaucracy.

Thursday, February 04, 2016

New Hampshire

As we move from Iowa to New Hampshire, the dynamics have changed. Now we have Cruz, Trump and even Bush, taking shots at Rubio. That tells me rather transparently, that they are afraid of the momentum that Rubio is generating.

In my 78 years, which includes the election of John F. Kennedy in 1960, I find this the best parallel to Rubio. Kennedy was an inexperienced Senator that elevated his campaign through the wonder of television. The boyish face, the bouffant hair and the force of his personality got him elected over the stoic Richard Nixon. Later, the rigid right wing libertarianism  cost Goldwater all but two states.

There are some parallels with Marco Rubio, who has two things that stand out. First, as in the Kennedy campaign, it wasn't about issues, it was about slogans and personality. Many, if not most voters identify with those traits. how many of you remember the electric quote, "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country." That ranks right up with the Gettysburg address.

We'll never know whether Kennedy would have made a great president or not. His life cut short,  death made him more famous than his accomplishments. But many airports and other monuments were named after him.

My point here is this. some of us Republicans  tend to value philosophical purity over winning. Given that all office seekers, from both parties spout nothing but platitudes while campaigning, the reality is that personality wins.

Of the remaining Republican candidates, Trump, Rubio, Cruz and possibly Kasich and Bush, if they survive New Hampshire, the personality of Rubio shines above all of the rest. This is important because of those that are looking beyond the primaries and conventions, want a candidate that can like Kennedy, relate to the people with warmth and a positive attitude and win in November, which in the early frays sometimes escapes voters minds. 


Monday, February 01, 2016

Iowa

Tonight, we find out whether common sense prevails, or insanity does. Choosing a Narcissistic billionaire Buffoon, a nasty name caller, or one of several other intelligent leaders as Iowa's choice for Republican nominee for president.

As I watch the polls, I have lost hope that our citizenry has retained it's collective sanity. How a non-conservative no nothing Blowhard could lead these polls defies logic. Hopefully the citizens of Iowa are pulling our legs.

If we end up with Trump and Sanders as the choices, the suicide rate in this country will soar.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Irony

In choosing to skip the Republican debate tonight, the press has given Trump many times more press than if he had attended. Donald Trump may be a Narcissistic Joke, but he sure do know how to generate attention.

I, as many other mainstream Republicans, sincerely hope that when the dust settles, we don't have a ticket with Clinton vs. Trump. Or for that matter, a president that turns out to be a Canadian citizen.

I keep hoping that our electorate will allow common sense to prevail.But then I look at Burns, Oregon and realize that not everyone has any. 

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Winning The Battle, Losing The War

My party, the Republican party, has a history of valuing principle over winning. This of course is fool hardy. You cannot apply principle unless you are elected. Ergo, we can win the battle, but lose the war.

Both parties are drifting more and more to the right and left every election cycle. The Wackos on both extremes simply work harder for control than those of us who have a life and career outside politics.

Unfortunately, with roughly 30% hard core right wing, and another 30% hard core left wing, it isn't the doctrinaires that win elections, it's the 40% in the middle, sometimes called the silent majority. These voters, will either pick a candidate that match their views the best, or at least is most likely to beat the other party.

These people middle of the road, or moderates. Why we continuously select the most doctrinaire candidates, which will and cannot stand a prayer of winning, is a puzzle to me. In Iowa, which hold it's caucuses in a week, the candidates are sparing with who has the most hard right qualifications, when they should be looking at who has the charisma to woo the electorate.

Originally I was for Carson, but when he, along with the fool billionaire threatened to bolt the party if the convention is brokered, lost me right there. Cruz is confrontational, insulting and doesn't have an ounce of charisma.

Of the two that could ably lead the country, Rubio and Bush, Rubio does have that charisma that will play well on television, Bush does not.

For these reasons I am backing Rubio. Please join me.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Winter Is Retreating

While the East is reeling under a blizzard that hit about 2:30 ET, our winter is retreating. Yesterday marked the first over 40 degree temperatures since before Christmas and the big snow. The long range forecast is for rain and grey skies, but mostly above freezing except at night.

My brother and sister-in-law winter in the Tampa, Florida area and are experiencing severe thunderstorms, while the eastern seaboard is expecting storm surges bringing ocean front flooding, exacerbated by a full moon which brings higher tides.

While I prefer 80 degrees and sunny, considering what others are putting up with, I'll take the rain. You don't have to shovel it. Just hunker down with your favorite beverage and partner. It's snuggle time.