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29 September 2016

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Bill Herschel

Increasingly I believe that "Make America Great Again" = "Make Germany Great Again" dusted off from the 30's. And I do believe that Trump, age 70, may very well have accelerated the process described in this extremely interesting article about drug use in the 3rd Reich.

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2016/sep/25/blitzed-norman-ohler-adolf-hitler-nazi-drug-abuse-interview

A Vet

Sir,

Your experience and intelligence are needed on the Alt Right. Don't allow yourself to be put off by the memes. There are plenty of good Americans who used to be Libertarians over there.

And they call the Borg by its true name.


Jack

Sir

I lean libertarian philosophically. For over two decades I have not voted for the candidates from the duopoly. I have written in Ron Paul for the past 4 presidential elections. I have never bought into the voting for the lesser evil thesis that partisans use to justify their vote. Johnson is correct IMO when he states that only wasted vote is for one you don't believe in.

This election however I am likely to change my voting tradition to vote fir Trump. There's three reasons why. First, during the primary when it would have been politically expedient to take the Borgist stance, he took positions against war and unnecessary foreign interventions. Second, during the debate this week he took a no nuclear first strike position and reiterated his stance that we should not be the world's policeman. Third, again during the debate he showed me that he got that the Fed's policies have created a financial asset bubble and that despite the doubling of the federal governments debt under Obama and the trillions in balance sheet expansion by the Fed we have the weakest post-war economic recovery. He showed me that he understands that growth is going to require substantial reform.

The Beaver

Weld does surprise me. First time, I heard him was last August driving through NH to get back to Montreal.He was being interviewed by NPR and he sounded very smart and knowledgeable. I thought he was on top of that ticket since I was not paying too much attention then. Last month, he was interviewed on "with all due respect" on Bloomberg and that's when I came to appreciate his person and personality. Hopefully, the next time (in 4 yrs) he will run as POTUS.

Valissa

I voted for Johnson in 2012 and am going to vote for him again this time around. He can be a bit doofy sometimes but he's smart and has a good background in terms of experience with governance. Although I'm a 3rd party voter, I still want to see a "good resume" for the job, and that includes prior political experience (meaning winning an election).

I think Johnson's background as both a successful business owner and then a 2-term governor is more important and says more about his character and capabilities than gotcha foreign policy questions that are flubbed.

Short Johnson bio (purposefully avoided Wikipedia and campaign websites) http://www.nbcnews.com/id/44581578/ns/decision_2012/t/candidate-bio---gary-johnson/#.V-1lfoWcGcw
Gary Johnson is the former two-term Republican governor of New Mexico. Raised in North Dakota and then New Mexico, Johnson graduated from the University of New Mexico in 1975. Johnson started a construction company in 1976 which grew into a multi-million enterprise in the decades since. He won the governorship in 1994 as an upstart Republican candidate, making a name for himself over the course of his time in office as a libertarian-minded conservative. He’s been active in libertarian causes, including marijuana legalization, since leaving office and is an accomplished athlete, having climbed Mt. Everest in 2003.

Weld was the first republican I ever voted for. The Democrat he ran against was truly horrid. Even the super liberal newspaper of the Northampton, MA area at the time backed Weld over Silber.

Our current MA governor is a Republican who has over 80% job approval rating and is very well liked across the state. He's very quietly competent, and had both prior business and gov't experience... and it shows!

'Boring' Municipal Bill: Local Officials Applaud Cutting Red Tape http://news.wgbh.org/2016/08/09/politics-government/boring-municipal-bill-local-officials-applaud-cutting-red-tape
Gov. Charlie Baker signed off Tuesday on a major reform package aimed at cutting bureaucracy and giving cities and towns more autonomy over their finances. Baker describes his municipal regulations reform as "weed wacking" with good reason: the bill resulted from dialogue with the state's 351 cities and towns, and has over 125 sections that total 200 pages. It is, by Beacon Hill standards, a delightful paradox: mounds of detail that make public life a bit more straightforward. Very Charlie Baker. … "I think the governor has made a thing about making things boring so that people can live their lives and not have to worry about government doing what it's supposed to do. So boring is working," Rivera said. In a nation wrapped in negativity, this is akin to a shout of joy.

Yeah, we have a governor who actually cares about good governance. Too bad this attitude doesn't exist at the national level.

Valissa

This poll of the U.S. military has Gary Johnson tied with Donald Trump in the race for president http://www.militarytimes.com/articles/this-poll-of-the-us-military-has-gary-johnson-tied-with-donald-trump-in-the-race-for-president

michae brenner

Let's face it. Nothing of any significance will change in American foreign policy. Hillary has nowhere to be macho without risking intolerable consequences. She'll follow Hayden's juvenile posturing with tough rhetoric. She has no new ideas, no new people, who could make an alternative even possible. It's likely that Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Somalia et al will remain in a general state of disarray. She - or Kaine - will run on the boast that they crushed ISIL (2018). Of course, the remnants will be wreaking havoc in all the above mentioned places but, then again, no one is perfect.

So save some choice critiques and comments for a second or third coming over the next four years. Meanwhile, in Beijing....

turcopolier

Michael Brenner

"Neither fear nor hope." pl

DC

I'm with you; at this point, I intend to vote Libertarian. HRC scares the bejeezus out of me. The FBI investigation of Trump's "nonprofit" is surely intended to solidify her advantage. God help us all.

rjj

grief ?

Fred

Bill,

We've had more Hitlers than a cat has lives. I make it so far:
Grand Ayatollah Khomeini, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad,Saddam Hussein, Viktor Yanukovych, Kim Jong-un, Bashir Assad, Vladimir Putin, and Donald Trump. Then there is the actual dead guy, Hitler. Did I miss any, other than the latest ADL object of hate, Pepe the cartoon meme?

Jake from Farm State

The only thing I disagree with is DT doesn't have humor. When I've watched him on the campaign trail he comes out with the funniest lines. I LMAO. I agree Hillary is humorless and it's painful when she tries.

I agree with you on Weld and wouldn't mind him as President. And while I would trust him on the foreign policy realm (not to start wars, esp. with Russia), we are in extremely perilous situation economically and financially, and DT recognizes this. I'm in a job where daily I see the benefits provided to recent (or not so recent) immigrants and I see these numbers exploding and the expansion of the benefits exploding. I also know lawyers in immigrants rights groups here in the U.S. who regularly spend time in Guatemala, et al., helping future immigrants (and their families) set up housing and welfare benefits in the U.S. or particular states for when they come. I lower my anxiety by telling myself it's not real money, just fiat money or just reorganization of electrons in financial databases. But I wonder how much longer this can go on? Maybe the monetary maipulation and the Fed have made fundamental economic laws like scarcity no longer relevant? There are a few titans of finance and industry who say it can't, and we are facing cataclysmic collapse (Carl Icahn, Jim Rogers, etc.).

rjj

"the only wasted vote is one you cast for someone you don't believe in."

just about word for word the reason one of the nearest & dearest + noblest gave in 2001 for voting Nader in NH.

Freudenschade

Col.,

How did this inverted ticket come to be? Weld should be at the top. I'd even be inclined to vote for him if the risk of a Trump presidency didn't worry me so.

mike allen

Colonel -

Weld is extremely smart and he was a good governor. My sister, a lifelong democrat, voted for him for governor and for his 94 re-election. He was an old line Republican like Dewey of NY or even like Senators Collins or Snowe of Maine.

Weld never got further along in the Republican Party due to antipathy from Jesse Helms and other whackjobs who could not stand his so-called New England social values.

As for Bill being a pothead, he says he tried it but never inhaled ( I know, I know, I can hear you all laughing and rolling on the floor ). I tried pot when I was a young Pfc back in 1960. I was hanging out with a young lady and trying to get to know her a lot better. I failed the test because when she passed me a stick of pot that she was smoking I tried to take a drag but immediately went into a coughing spasm from its harshness and was not able to inhale. I was a heavy smoker of unfiltered camels at the time. So I believe the man. Has anybody in this august committee of correspondence ever tried to smoke pot for the first time and not gone into a coughing jag?

Castellio

What is its true name?

Liza

Col. Lang:

I'm extremely concerned about the "let's teach Russia a lesson" mentality. Russia has the power to trigger a collapse of the stock market, and the Borg lacks the strategic analytic ability to anticipate this.

Virtually all the titanium used by the US defense industry is purchased from Russia. This is a major strategic and economic vulnerability, and the Borg is not taking this into consideration.

Consider what would happen if the Kremlin suddenly announced that Russia would no longer sell titanium to the US. The American defense industry would not be able to produce weapons. The reasonable action would be for stockholders to dump the stock. There is "plunge protection" in place to respond to a crash, in which financial firms such as Goldman buy stock and "stop the bleeding". But this would not be an ordinary crisis.

We are at a point of tremendous economic vulnerability. Our stock market is estimated to be 50 percent overvalued. American corporations have invested $4.5 trillion to buy shares of their own stock since 2008. (CEO compensation is usually based on share price). Corporations have invested most of their earnings to do this. They also have taken on substantial debt to finance this. If the stock market crashes, the market value of these corporations will plummet. The corporations will still have to pay back loans, at a time that corporate earnings have declined for six quarters. The inevitable result: widespread corporate bankruptcy, a surge in loan defaults, and mass layoffs.

The Fed is well aware of this vulnerability. Janet Yellen recently said that Congress may consider changing the law to allow the Fed to purchase stocks.

There is no alternative source of titanium.

China and Russia are the only two sources of titanium. China uses all of its titanium and also would unwillingly to supply the US since the titanium would be used to make weapons that could be used against China.

The Obama administration feared that Russia would suspend titanium sales at the time that sanctions were imposed. Russia wasn't strong enough at the time. Russia used the Swift payment system, and the US could have cut Russia off from the international financial system, replicating the strategy used against Iran.

Russia is now in a much stronger position. They have their own payment system and also could use the system developed by China. Russia has survived sanctions and has now come out of recession. Their debt is minimal at a time when other nations -- including the United States -- face exorbitant debt. An agreement to limit oil production has been reached. Germany cannot tolerate sanctions if Deutsche Bank has to be bailed out.

Russia is perfectly poised to strike.

https://www.google.com/amp/www.wallstreetdaily.com/2015/03/10/u-s-titanium-supply-russia/amp/?client=ms-android-att-aio-us&espv=1

Mark Logan

A minor dissertation on Mathews,

I've never been able to tolerate him for even a minute. Channel surfing in there feels like walking into a room while someone is indulging a fetish...one that I can't understand...and he want's you to stay and watch. Yuk!

"Ahhhhhh...no, Chris...thanks for the offer but NO. Look, I'm not judgmental about this or anything, what ever consenting adults do and all that...Now, Chris, what's going to happen is I'm going to close this door and we are BOTH going to forget that I EVER opened it, mmmmmmkay??"

Walk away..looking for a place to wash my hands...

michael brenner

In addition to the structural, political and intellectual reasons behind a forecast of inertial continuity, there is the simple truth that 70 year-olds with health problems and a mutually dependent husband who wants to "play" are not the stuff from which imperialist adventurers are made.

So, I think that what we have to worry about is more routine failure rather than outright catastrophe abroad. That may come eventually and incrementally. For the time being, isn't our biggest enemy ourselves here at home?

Prem

Clinton didn't inhale.

Although, Christopher Hitchens, who was an Oxford contemporary, said that was because Bill took his dope in the form of hash brownies.

crf

Military conflicts are usually political liabilities. Especially for Democrats which have a large constituency much more sceptical of war. So if re-election and gains in the Senate or House are important to the Democratic party, they should try to keep a lid on Clinton's Hawkishness throughout her first term in office.

But one of the weird things about Obama is how disconnected he has been to the wishes of his own elected Senators and Congressmen and Women. (This is in great contrast to GW Bush.) Maybe Hillary will learn from Obama's political mistakes. Neglecting the needs of the House and Senate led to Obama's loss of majorities in those chambers, which neutered him politically.

Ishmael Zechariah

Colonel,
Re: " Fightin' Joe Scarborough and his buddy Mike Hayden opined that someone needs to "teach the Russians a lesson."
This old infantryman wonders who that "someone" would be. Did these brave souls present any ideas?
Ishmael Zechariah

Karl Kolchack

Personally, I'd prefer the president be versed in what is going on in Akron rather than Aleppo. I'm not a big fan of the Libertarians, but better they or the Greens than either of the two major party crooks and liars.

Will Smith

Let's face it this is binary choice Trump is only real candidate who don't want to start war with Russia. Vote for Johnson in any swing state is vote for war crazy Hillary.

Will

the thing about Gore, and i voted for him, was he was part of the regime that put the medical embargo on Iraq that cost 1/2 million children's lives. The embargo that Madeline Albright said was worth the deaths. He was a committed Israeli Firster. No guarantee he wouldn't have hired the same NeoCons that Obama did and invaded Iraq just like Dubya.

So Nader was right, it was basically a contest b/c Tweedelee and Tweedelum. How impudent of the Gore crowd to say that Nader shouldn't have run. Moreover, Gore won the election except for one crucial vote- Scalia's. It was the Supremes that elected Dubya. Often, it is mentioned, that if he had just campaigned a little more in NH, then he wouldn't have had to worry about FL, butterfly ballots et al.

I like Trump better than Hillary, but have reservations- the biggest one is his demonization of Iran. I may vote third or fourth party, in the end. I agree with the Col. that Gov. Weld should of have been on top of that ticket. He was governor of Mass and even tried a run as guv of NY before backing out.

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