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09 November 2016


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I read that as demoncrats and thought it was pretty funny., witty.

alba etie

Ishmael Zechariah
It is always helpful to have our overseas SST community 'weigh in " on topics here. I would argue what is going on with the war against Daesh is relevant for understanding the result of our recent Trump victory here in These United States It is my opinion that its been the Deplorables families here that have been paying most of the freight both in blood & treasure for all the Neo Con misadventures over seas. The reason I asked about Raqqa was it seems if the YPG and there Arab partners take Raqqa then it might open the space for some type of Kurdish state in a Syrian Federation .

alba etie

Would you be able to post here at SST ,with of course the good Colonel's permission- a description of how ,when & where the work of 40 million illegals being deported from These United States will take shape ? And how much that would cost ?

And again enjoy your victory laps sir , its shaping up to be an interesting four next years .

Mark Gaughan

Is it?

Mark Gaughan

And your point is?


If this was posted earlier, I missed it: Where the Third-Party Candidates Were Strongest ... And who did those candidates help more, Trump or Clinton?


The Beaver

@ Babak

Same can be said for John Bolton.

All three of them are what are called "Iran hawks".
Now, whilst they are being vetted for cabinet positions, it would be interesting to see what the US Treasury found out during its investigations about payments made by MEK to officials proclaiming its virtues.

Old Gun Pilot

You don't need a special prosecutor to prosecute a federal crime, the U.S.Attorney in the location of the offense has full authority. However, I agree with the F.B.I. director concerning the e-mails, this isn't even close. I base this as a criminal defense attorney with over 300 jury trials and who practices routinely in the Federal Court. The Clinton Foundation could be different but there's not enough facts at this point to know.

The Beaver

If Newt Gingrich or John Bolton becomes the Sec of State . However, we should remember that the JCPOA is not a deal with the US only but the P5+1 and I doubt the EU3 and Russia would stay quiet - they've got too much to lose - especially France TOTAL which is vyying for more contracts as the China is making her own move.

Babak Makkinejad

To my knowledge, Iran was not involved against Serbia by supporting Muslims in Kosovo; it that is what you meant.

Iran was involved in supporting Bosnian Muslims - Slavic converts from Christianity during Ottoman rule - during the war in Bosnia.

In any event, US & EU states forced Bosnians to evict Iranians; preferring Saudi Arabians there instead - during the 1990s.

In regards to Muslim Jihadists waging war against the Russian Federation:

The Islamic Republic of Iran, to my knowledge, never supported the Chechens; at considerable political cost to the standing of Iran among Sunni Muslims who considered Chechens to be waging a Just War.

Babak Makkinejad

Amazing that the memory of the Great King still could bring forth such propaganda; as though the Ionians never existed.



Labor unions were not 'created' they came into existence over a long, long and often violent period in the US which is quite different than what happened in Europe. Immigration has not played any part on wages? That's funny. You should get the fine folks running Taiwan to open the borders to a few million folks across the straits. BTW I'm glad to know academia now considers fields like construction, agriculture and meat packing to be high tech white collar jobs that are affected by immigration.



Yes in the West we still remember Leonidas and the 300 and even Ephialtes. In the East you have - the Great King. The rest were just statistics subjects of little note and are long forgotten.



That's one reason I keep coming back to this. The one scenario that I modeled that got the election results almost exactly right is not the one that included partisanship but one that omitted college education: omitting college education as a factor in demographics actually got every state right except NV and CO, which the model assigned to the Trump column (it also predicted 1% PV plurality for Trump). Including parties actually gets things more wrong than right--especially in the Midwest.). In other words, Trump won because he did well among the working class AND because he did pretty well among the educated voters, not nearly as much as polls were predicting. This made intuitive sense to me when I ran it because educated partisans, when push comes to shove, vote party (and Republicans "coming home" was in the news). Among the working class, on the other hand, partisanship matters less--throwing out the party variable showed the latter moving to Trump across party lines. Still, I had trouble believing this since the polls were showing too large a gap between college grads and non college grads.

So this is the subtle reality taking a closer look at polls should show us: Trump won because of Republican college grads AND non-Republican working class--and the latter are the real "Deplorables," the forgotten people whose voice deserves to be heard. Will they be heard? If Trump can shout down the former, the Republican college grads, for the latter, he will be the great man that he thinks he is. Until that moment, I will reserve judgment beyond offering him the goodwill he deserves as the president-elect.


Power from Nuke Fusion? The Sun is a giant fusion reactor constantly blasting photons our way. The three problems were cost, looks, and battery storage. Cost has come down, solar house shingles are being developed, and Musk is building the largest battery manufacturing plant on the planet. It may be here sooner than people think? Will the utilities and guv allow us to live off the grid?

But then again, cold fusion keeps poking its head tantalizingly. there may indeed be something to it. And there could be a breakthrough in the laser fusion and Tokomak plasma containment proects.



Ionians didn't exist. Neither did Korean kamikaze pilots (if you are Korean nationalists), and they didn't sing forbidden Korean nationalist songs on the way to their last mission either (if you are Japanese nationalists).

Babak Makkinejad

Of course, with a name such "Babak Makkinejad" one could not be a European.

I must admit that I do like Spain; perhaps "Victor Hector Ricardo Montalban y Alba"?

Sam Peralta

Hasn't worked for Japan over the last 30 years. They've built many a bridge to nowhere while exploding their government debt. Yet, there has been no real growth.

The context is important.

China is the most recent example that infrastructure keynesians use. While some of that infrastructure spending was very useful, there has also been massive misallocation of capital. The denouement of the resultant China credit bubble is yet to arrive. Watch that story unfold.


Tidewater to Babak,

First of all, I thought that the Ionians--meaning Asia Minor -- were up in revolt against Xerxes and the central government of the empire because of the heavy taxation on them to build Persepolis? (Though having been there for a half a day I am inclined to think it was worth it.) But what does the Great King have to do with all this? Xerxes was the son of his daughter and the blood could become thin, and the times change, could it not? From clog to clog in three generations? Hmmmm. People never get over having an empire, huh? So, it's gotta be 'just stick with the team', vote (or bow to) the straight Achaemenid ticket, always, right down through the Ages? You sound like an old Tory! I thought you were a liberal, modern, high-tech intellectual? Now you reveal that you seem to entertain some sort of knee-jerk loyalty to a lost Golden Age that went Bronze and then lost even that when they couldn't get tin from Cornwall to make the bronze, cause of somebody's blockade or the other. And the next thing you know, man, it's the Iron Age! Face it. Adapt and survive. Xerxes messed up. That doesn't reflect on the Great King.

But what is Cavafy really talking about? Could it not be the 'trahison des clercs'. The Treason of the Scribes?

David Habakkuk

F.B. Ali,

Unfortunately, having been busy with other things, I have not been following how Theresa May has been handling matters as closely as I would have liked.

What I do think is that there is a market social contrast with the leadership she has replaced, which is very much to her advantage.

Not only David Cameron, but also George Osborne and Boris Johnson, were members of a thing called the Bullingdon Club at Oxford. Its members had dinners where they got blind drunk, trashed the places they had hired, and then thought the could make it up by flashing their (unearned) money around.

And Cameron and Osborne also admired and imitated Blair, who apparently they called ‘the Master’.

(See https://www.theguardian.com/politics/shortcuts/2016/oct/03/tony-blaie-the-master-cameron-osborne-nickname .)

The author of the piece in the ‘Guardian’ to which I have linked clearly regards this is all rather funny. I think Blair, Cameron and Osborne are not only extraordinarily unpleasant people, but also embody rather precisely the pathology of contemporary Western élites, who have increasingly lost touch with, and come to despise, the people they are supposed to represent.

(Also, Blair, Cameron and Osborne are all, to put it bluntly, drivelling dolts, in particular when it comes to trying to make some sense of worlds beyond Britain.

They are still consumed with ‘imperial nostalgia’, but have nothing, or at least very little, of the – sometimes by no means negligible – ‘knowledge base’ which old-fashioned ‘imperialists’ had. Among other things, none of them have any serious grasp of military matters.)

Like them, Theresa May went to Oxford – and she also grew up in Oxfordshire. But her father was an Anglican vicar, and – apparently – a grandfather a regimental sergeant major. She went to Oxford from a comprehensive school. Her husband, whom she met there, is a banker.

Accordingly, she in part is a product of, and exemplifies, the tensions and contradictions involved in the culture of the modern Tory Party.

It may be very helpful, however, that she is, as it were, in the middle.

Also, I think, because of her background, she has some of the virtues of an older Anglican culture.

People who come out of such a culture, as I in part do, would never – but never, never in any circumstances – talk about ‘deplorables’. This does not mean that they necessarily like, or approve, what some of those ‘deplorables’ may think and say.

But they are part of your own people, and you do not simply dismiss them as a kind of ‘lower form of life.’ (This is not simply a matter of benevolence and good nature: Sensible people know that if you push ‘deplorables’ too far, they may run amuck. You don’t want 1789, or 1917)

Likewise – as Kipling very well knew and brought out – that old Anglican culture had a very complex relationship with those ‘deplorables’ who, historically, made up the rank-and-file of the British Army.

Curiosity about these matters provoked me into doing a search on the mortality rate among Oxford graduates in 1914-18. As someone who grew up in Oxford, but whose background has nothing in common with that of Cameron, Osborne, and Boris Johnson, I was fascinated to find an entry on the website of Corpus Christi College:

‘During the course of the First World War, 351 Corpus men saw active service. Of these, 90 were killed – the entire intake for about 4½ years at pre-1914 rates of entry. At 25 per cent of those serving, Corpus’ losses were the highest for all Oxford colleges. Much depended on the college’s social composition: those, like Corpus, with the highest public school entries fared worse than others with a smaller proportion from public schools. Whatever the make-up of the particular college, recruits from Oxford colleges were overwhelmingly public school men who were quickly commissioned as junior officers and whose lives as leaders in the front line were generally short.

‘Of the 90 student casualties, 15 had earned an order (two Victoria Crosses, nine Military Crosses and four Mentions in Dispatches) during their World War I service. Aside from the Corpus Christi College students who died, there were also two “servants” who were killed in the war. Of these individuals we know nothing other than their names (A. Clifford and H.G. Ward), their regiments, and their date of death.”

(See https://www.ccc.ox.ac.uk/Roll-of-Honour-1914-1918-Introduction/ .)

Because very few had anticipated a long war, it was precisely the ‘public school men’ from Oxford and similar places who were thrown in, when so many of the officers of the old professional army had ‘come a cropper’, as we say in England, without adequate training, let alone experience.

It may be that today’s comfortable Oxford students are still sometimes driven to reflect on how long the lists on the boards commemorating their colleges’ war dead are.

I have to say that in relation to the Corpus Christi website I am slightly inclined to suspect a small element of snobbery, as college ‘servants’ – very important people in running these institutions – in general were recruited among older men, and so would could not have been expected to figure high up in casualty lists.

But the history does point up what used to be a basic principle. There were limits to how far the élites were happy to go around creating wars in which they expected their social inferiors to fight while they remained exempt.

Contemporary élites, alike in Britain and the United States, cannot understand what the nature of an older ‘social contract’ was.

Accordingly, they cannot see that, although it is doubtless outdated, their inability to replace it with anything meaningful is as dangerous for them as it is for everyone else.


Tidewater to Babak Makkinejad,

I admit that there are so often different points of view.

The Persian Version

Truth-loving Persians do not dwell upon
The trivial skirmish fought near Marathon.
As for the Greek theatrical tradition
Which represents that summer's expedition
Not as a mere reconnaissance in force
By three brigades of foot and one of horse
(Their left flank covered by some obsolete
Light craft detached from the main Persian fleet)
But as a grandiose, ill-starred attempt
To conquer Greece--they treat it with contempt;
And only incidentally refute
Major Greek claims, by stressing what repute
The Persian monarch and the Persian nation
Won by this salutary demonstration:
Despite a strong defence and adverse weather
All arms combined magnificently together.

Robert Graves.

Babak Makkinejad

You miss the entirety of what the Great King accomplished; the first Universal Empire.

And there was this: when the Great King was overthrown by the Greeks, everything East of Dardanelles was deprived of the spread of the tradition of Greek Rationalist Thought, strongest among Ionians.

That defect has persisted for over 2300 years - with various attempts at its amelioration all failing repeatedly.

Babak Makkinejad

Well, I feel free to emphasize this or that historical epoch. After all, you guys West of the Diocletian Line write history as though there is positive progression from Solon all the way to Trump.

The fact of the matter is that since the demise of the Great King, Peace and Prosperity have only prevailed in that part of the world contingently and sporadically.

The Seljuks were the closest that came to the Great King, ruling from Oxus to Antalia - but the death of great Alp Arsalan - who forgot his duty to his subjects to live - sealed its fate.

Had Alp Arsalan lived, almost certainly the Seljuks would have endured and would have protected the inhabitants of Central Asia and the Iranian Plateau from decades of Mongol depredation and rapine.

Babak Makkinejad

Thank you.

I have been told that Koreans were well on the path of assimilation until US destroyed the Empire of Japan.


Depends on what one means by "assimilation." By late 1930s, Japanese Empire decided on "multicultural" Empire as the official policy, and both Taiwanese and Koreans responded rather well to the idea (and this is why they thought the whole Co-Prosperity Sphere would work well.) Simultaneously promoting a managed version of Korean nationalism and the Japanese imperial idea led to the paradoxes like what I mentioned, and who knows how it'd have turned out if it was allowed to continue on for a few more decades.

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