This is but a mere sign of the insanity:
Top Trump administration officials will hold a rare briefing on Wednesday at the White House for the entire U.S. Senate on the situation in North Korea.
All 100 senators have been asked to the White House for the briefing by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and General Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said White House spokesman Sean Spicer on Monday.
While administration officials routinely travel to Capitol Hill to address members of Congress on foreign policy matters, it is unusual for the entire Senate to go to the White House, and for all four of those officials to be involved.
Wednesday’s briefing was originally scheduled for a secure room at the Capitol, but President Donald Trump suggested a shift to the White House, congressional aides said.
So they are wasting a shitload of money building a secure room at the WH that can fit that number instead of having Der Hairpiece going to the Capitol for no reason other than dickwagging “make them come to me” bravado.
Meanwhile, at the NY Times:
Behind the Trump administration’s sudden urgency in dealing with the North Korean nuclear crisis lies a stark calculus: a growing body of expert studies and classified intelligence reports that conclude the country is capable of producing a nuclear bomb every six or seven weeks.
That acceleration in pace — impossible to verify until experts get beyond the limited access to North Korean facilities that ended years ago — explains why President Trump and his aides fear they are running out of time. For years, American presidents decided that each incremental improvement in the North’s program — another nuclear test, a new variant of a missile — was worrisome, but not worth a confrontation that could spill into open conflict.
Judith Miller was unavailable for comment. *** READ THIS ***
What color will we have to change the blog title to for our impending Korean adventurism?
“Hey, all you guys who can impeach me, come to my house and I’ll let you play with my toys if you promise to be nice to me. Dad always said, if you can’t make friends, buy them”
This is utterly insane.
I have absolutely nothing but contempt for everyone who voted for this muthaphucka or enabled his election by being a purity pony.
State Department retreats after promoting Trump’s for-profit business
04/25/17 08:40 AM
By Steve Benen
Either the State Department didn’t realize it’d be unethical to use official resources to promote one of Donald Trump’s for-profit business, or the State Department did realize it and the promotion happened anyway.
This was, for all intents and purposes, an advertisement endorsed by the U.S. government for one of the president’s business ventures. It touted, for example, the Florida resort’s “style and taste.”
Norm Eisen, the chief ethics lawyer in the Obama White House, highlighted the obvious problem: there are ethics rules in place to prevent the use of government resources to promote private businesses, especially those owned by the president. The State Department promoting Mar-a-Lago is at least as problematic as Kellyanne Conway encouraging Fox News viewers to purchase Ivanka Trump-branded merchandise, if not more so.
Well, technically, since June 25, 1950 or thereabouts, we have always been at war with North Korea.
I don’t know what Trump plans to do.
I know a war with North Korea is a dumb idea.
They are a poor country, with few friends in the world. Other than the threat they pose to Souuh Korea, they have nothing anyone wants.
I am tempted just to leave them alone now.
Clinton handled it once. Bush, Jr screwed it up. And there is no easy way to unscrew it.
Just color it blue, because that’s how I’ve been feeling since MSM promoted him.
Never thought that I’d be praying that Kim Jong Un is saner than our current president.
Why are Dems playing along with this dog and pony show? Make the tiny handed fascist go to the capital.
No matter what happens, SCROTUS has boxed himself in. This will probably be his biggest foreign policy disaster. Any military option in that region is an unimaginable quagmire. Any backing down from the threats will be a sign of weakness. If they think waving around a stick is going to suddenly make China force N Korea to come to the table and negotiate some kind of deal like with Iran then they are even dumber than I thought.
I thought this thread was going to be about Trump’s actual mental, neurological and psychological health issues. Claude Taylor on Twitter is doing a good job of RTing the conversations between several actual mental health professionals, including Propane Jane. Click through to his twitter feed to find those tweets and you can click through and follow the conversations from there.
Conclusion seems to be he’s got various mental health issues, like NPD but also exhibits signs of brain problems, possibly dementia or similar issue. Interesting analyses of previous and current videos of him speaking and what that means as to deterioration.
These people have been running around doing shit at the behest of an idiot full of sound and fury signifying nothing, only to turn around and realize that narcissistic megalomaniacs know not to trust another narcissistic megalomaniac. Whocouldaknow? Calling the entire senate to the WH to brief them is just more of the same, it looks like they are doing something, if you think telling a bunch of bloviators what your plans are to be doing something, but it serves as a distraction for the villagers. Look squirrel, president blackety black never did this, see how serious he’s taking Lill Kim!
“memories…” in honor of Barbra’s 75th…. and reading this, I realized I have been reading this blog for more than 15 years… and we are going on a Nuclear snipe hunt, this time. “It’s the end of the world as we know it…”
To prevent a shutdown, Trump begins an embarrassing surrender
04/25/17 08:00 AM
By Steve Benen
Just last week, Donald Trump’s White House tried to play a little hardball. With a government-shutdown deadline looming, Team Trump sent word to Capitol Hill that the president expects any spending bill to include taxpayer money for a border wall. Since there was no chance Democrats would agree to such a demand, it meant one of two things would happen.
Either Trump would shut the federal government down on Friday at midnight, which would be politically problematic for him and his administration, or Trump would surrender, which would be politically problematic for him and his administration.
The president has apparently chosen the latter.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told reporters yesterday. “The president is working hard to keep the government open.” And by “working hard,” Mnuchin apparently meant, “crawling away from the corner he backed himself into without any plan for success.”
Democrats are likely to agree to some new funding for border security, in the form of investments in “technology and border agents,” and it’s easy to imagine the president pretending that this is money for some kind of symbolic, metaphorical wall, but let’s not play games: Trump and his team effectively told Democrats, “Allocate money for the wall or else.” Calling the White House’s bluff, Democrats replied, “No.”
And in response, Team Trump blinked.
We will see some bluster then Trump acting like it is a resolved issue and moving on to blather about his next failure.
Health care, the wall, tax reform aka cuts, NoKo. He’s a loudmouthed braggart who has no idea how to get anything done. And when he finds out that actual work is involved he drops it and moves on.
The problem with Trump’s massive corporate tax cut
04/25/17 09:20 AM—UPDATED 04/25/17 09:33 AM
By Steve Benen
With Donald Trump’s presidency nearing its 100th day, the White House is, by all appearances, feeling a little antsy about its lack of accomplishments. It’s one of the reasons Team Trump is scrambling this week to fund the government without a shutdown, push Republicans on health care, and unveil some vague ideas about tax policy.
We’ll reportedly see some kind of tax blueprint tomorrow, but in the meantime, the Wall Street Journal reports on one of the president’s top new priorities.
It’s worth pausing to note that the idea of congressional Republicans prioritizing the deficit over tax cuts is very hard to believe. GOP interest in balanced budgets has long been a ridiculous sham, used primarily as an excuse to reject popular Democratic priorities.
I am so happy Ivanka got dragged at the meeting in Germany. I wish they would have ripped her ass into pieces instead of just groaning loudly at her. I hate every single thing about her. That stupid modulated voice and her delivery. Every thing.
Iowa Old Lady
@Yarrow: Mr IOL and I have concluded that, with the exception of Papa Bush, every R president in our not-short lifetimes has had mental problems.
The pipeline between cable news and the Trump White House
04/24/17 04:51 PM
By Steve Benen
A couple of months ago, Fox News’ Heather Nauert announced her support for Ivanka Trump’s branded merchandise. Between that kind of endorsement, and Nauert’s role on the “Fox and Friends” program the president likes to promote, I suppose it shouldn’t come as too big a surprise that Nauert has now joined Donald Trump’s administration as the official spokesperson for the State Department.
In late November, Rachel had a segment about all of the people who were up for positions on Trump’s team because the Republican had seen them on TV. A month later, the list was even longer, and now it’s longer still. (Note, in February, Fox News’ Jonathan Wachtel was named the spokesperson for the U.S. mission to the United Nations.)
The Washington Post joked a few months ago, “The Trump revolution won’t just be televised. It will be led by television talking heads.” It’s even truer now than it was then.
Well, we can’t have a smoking mushroom gun or anything like that.
THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW 4/24/17
US military, State Dept key indicators of US world standing
Rachel Maddow looks at some of the most consequential developments in world news and the importance of the U.S. State Department and military in determining America’s global standing.
There’s plenty of cause for alarm — especially since the resolutely shitty NYT is in Miller Mode. But I remain hopeful this is all just dick-swinging to distract reporters from the upcoming “100 Days of Fail” coverage and that Velveeta Voldemort will move on to more local ruinous acts. Trump appears to have reached an agreement with President Xi to sell out the GOP base in exchange for lucrative licensing opportunities for The Family. Doing something rash in North Korea would fuck that up, no?
We had horrible election coverage, but it still amazes me there wasn’t more coverage of Trump as almost certain to start some military adventure.
I feel like it’s inevitable and I thought that all thru his campaign. I would bet money on it.
THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW 4/24/17
Comey politics undercuts confidence in Trump Russia investigation
Matt Apuzzo, reporter for the New York Times, talks with Rachel Maddow about how 2016 politics guided FBI Director James Comey’s actions on Hillary Clinton and what that means for how he’ll conduct the investigation into the Donald Trump campaign and Russian Ties
@Corner Stone: I have only heard her voice, during the R convention. I turned off my TV in < 5 min.
Snipe hunt is totally the wrong analogy this time. Saddam never had nukes*, they were a fiction invented to justify war. But we are 100% sure that Kim does have them, is working on mass producing them, and is also working on the technology to launch nukes to Japan, and ultimately the continental United States. These are things that the independent experts agree on.
The real question is how dangerous a mushroom-cloud capable NK is to the West. Rationally they have no more reason to launch them than does, say, India or Pakistan. But how confident can we be in NK rationality? Best guess is probably… well, *moderately* confident. But we don’t really know. And that’s not a comforting thought.
If you are a preznit this is something that SHOULD be keeping you up nights.
* Sure Saddam had chemical weapons (we know that because we had the receipts), but those are not an existential threat to, say, Miami. Nukes are.
O. Felix Culpa
Real question: What role do our military leaders (e.g. Sec. Mattis) play in the decision-making and what do they want?
Having raised sons, I know that boys like to go “pew,pew,pew” with their military toys, but do the big boys in our armed forces really want to go with war with North Korea?
@Betty Cracker: T is as much a creation of the Vichy Times as he is of Putin. They foisted him on us.
@O. Felix Culpa:DHS secretary Kelly has been consistently bad. Do not know much about Mattis.
@Kay: Excuse me, but Hillary was the hawk. Donald “Murder Their Families” Trump is a known pacifist.
@Yarrow: Love Propane Jane!!
Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes
Who leads the meeting? Mattis? Tillerson? Kushner? It isn’t like there will be any trust in any info presented.
I picture Schumer facepalming, Franken guffawing, Corker fidgeting, McConnell sweating, Paul swinging his head from left to right like a retarded cow. This won’t go well – it’s going to be the worst “rally round the flag” session of all time, as Kushner makes keening whines of “we’re really telling the truth this time, and he has the authority anyway”.
@Corner Stone: But cbs news told me this was the way the Germans were going to kiss Trump’s ass! By sucking up to the reasonable, bright, moderate Ivanka!
Are they wrong?? Horrors!!
Any military action is likely to escalate very quickly. I’m not sure that is describable as a quagmire.
As for why the Democrats attended. Probably a combination of morbid curiosity and fear. They wanted to see the shit show first hand, particularly as it might portend a war with a nuclear armed state, the destruction of one of the World’s key cities, a massive refugee crisis and high tensions and an expanded war in East Asia.
O. Felix Culpa
@schrodingers_cat: Agreed on Kelly. Mattis has maintained a very low profile thus far, which I find curious.
@O. Felix Culpa:
Well, at least the most popular uniformed ones they drag on da teevee most often seem to be unable to talk in terms other than “the bad guys” or other such infantile cammo-footed-pajama locutions, so — pace those known to a certain front pager — I’m not sure my hopes are high for non pew.pew.pewing.
Let us pause to recall that North Korea restarted their nuke development after George W. Bush abrogated an agreement reached under the Clinton administration to stop it.
W laid the table and now T is putting down the food.
@glory b: Going with the line about what a champion her father is for women and women’s issues probably shouldn’t have been her setup for the meeting.
I can’t believe LaGarde (IMF) agreed to sit beside her.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
Fortunately there are no troubling historical precedents for an insane would-be dictator treating a once independent Senate like a powerless and negligible relic of history
The “Whole Senate Invitation” is great showmanship.
The rubes will love it that Trump shows he is bipartisan when it comes to national security. He will turn around and ask why Democrats cannot equally support him on the wall and his other policies.
A current Guardian story on Trump supporters indicates that they love how strong he is on foreign policy. Some specifically mentioned how Trump is standing up to that fat guy in North Korea. They are clearly loving the razzle dazzle since as far as I can see, North Korea has not backed down an inch.
Also, does anyone know if US media did any follow up to the MOAB drop in Afghanistan. A BBC news report indicated that it made no difference. Fighting in the area continues and ISIS called on other potential supporters to come over the hills and valleys to join the fight.
She just lies. Every thing that comes out of the mouth of any of these people is just a lie. You can’t keep saying that you know things “from personal experience” when reality contradicts those statements time and time again.
The reason the Democrats will attend this meeting is to make sure an accurate account of it can be leaked as well as the GOP spin version. Even Trump isn’t dizzy enough to think this meeting won’t be made public before the close of the business day. That’s why he’s holding it.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
she is aware of the criticism from the media
When you’re a spoiled narcissist, being the only daughter, the only child, he likes is reality. What else is there?
Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes
The more I think about it, I think Gorka should be the one to lead the informational part of the meeting. His method of addressing Schumer or Franken by way of pejoratives about their religious faith (while Bannon nods approvingly in the corner) would be the cherry atop the shit sundae.
O. Felix Culpa
I’m afraid you’re right and hope that you’re not. I have no experience in things military, but wouldn’t (shouldn’t?) the leadership be concerned about entering into yet another unjustified, non-winnable engagement and the cost in blood and lives to their own people? Color me naive, I suppose.
@Kay: Chris Matthews among others was _dedicated_ to the idea that Trump was against foreign wars and wanted to build stuff at home instead. Then you had all the leftier Sandernistas and “civil libertarian” Snow-wald types flinging their own shit. Sure taught that wench a lesson! ;(
And if the government did shut down, there would be a lot of uncomfortable questions about what he’s doing holding a rally in Pennsylvania on Saturday while important work is going on in Washington. I wonder, seriously, if that actually was a factor in the Administration’s decision to back down.
@Brachiator: It just seems like classic “asshole boss” bullshit. Dominance display. He’ll probably make them all sit in low uncomfortable chairs that squeak in fart-like ways.
Reuters via John Cole @ Top:
NK can’t get a missile to go more than 5 miles off a launch pad without it blowing up, or otherwise failing, 7/8ths of the time.
But we’re supposed to believe NK is rolling out two working nukes every three months? Gimme a fucking break.
It’s a closed society. To a large extent, they don’t even know what they don’t know (kind of like our president). It’s ridiculous.
@Corner Stone: @glory b:
The only people buying that bullshit meme are the villagers, she is not popular with the American people. In spite of efforts like this to polish this turd, we just aren’t buying it.
So she’s not underwater like the rest of them, but this is beyond grading on a curve, and it’s also after she has garnered nothing but positive press. What happens when she gets more and more bad press, junkets like the one she just had do not make her look good, she’s supposed to be their secret weapon and that’s the best she can do? Recycling Hillary Clinton’s pet projects, not that Hillary has ownership of the issues, but Daddy’s little girl bragging about how he’s treated her is evidence of just how fucking clueless she is.
I too despise the woman, everything about her.
73% of Americans are apparently conspiracy theorists, right?
They won’t get an independent investigation. They’ll get a big “fuck you, who cares what you want” and more fawning coverage of Ivanka Trump.
The Congressional investigation has completely fallen apart so I guess we’re all relying on one person, Comey. Who already hugely fucked up public information on another investigation.
@unknown known: At this point, the nutjob from the west is more of a threat to the world than the nutjob from east.
OT (related to the stuff about the monuments in NOLA): It has a slightly bad taste, because it’s from a libertarian, but overall this essay, “The Enemies of All Mankind”, fucking rocks.
Yep. Our media are talking about looming mushroom clouds in the future over Seattle, Los Angeles and New York. We’re going to war.
If I lived in Seoul, I’d be heading south if I could because things are going to get ugly and neither our leaders, nor our media are going to give a fuck about the consequences of our latest act of warmongering.
@hovercraft: jeez, now the stupid msm is polling twitler’s incompetent ‘team’ for ‘favorability’? Guess the reality show has finally arrived at the murkan governance.
@jonas: Yeah, my impression is that NK’s acquisition of fission bombs is really a product of 43’s stupidity, but I don’t know all the details.
@Dread: I don’t get why the South K’s aren’t having more of a say in this.
Karl Rove used to blather on about “70% issues” and how pols risked it all if they defied the public on one.
That’s how many want an independent, transparent investigation into Russian meddling and that’s how many want to see Trump’s tax returns and they’re not getting either of these things.
So apparently “70% issues” are just bullshit too. We’ll get Ivanka in Germany and we’ll like it, godammnit.
@hovercraft: That said, 46% is actually a fairly low approval rating for a woman with blonde hair and a big chest who does… anything.
My fervent hope is that the next 4 years is all like that, and that the only real damage we sustain is the USSC. I’ll consider us lucky if that turns out to be the case.
Someone should have thought about that before 43 trashed the agreed upon framework, and before 43 and 44 showed to dictators that if you don’t have nukes, your likely fate is the end of a noose or a sharp knife up your ass.
@Dread: Our media is ALWAYS ready to go to war, unless it’s a Democrat that wants to do it. Yet another way they’re wired, bluntly put, for Republicans.
Wonder if they’ll be able to hide the couple of million causalities that will result when Seoul is leveled. I’m sure they’ll try like hell, but international media isn’t a tenth as craven as the media controlled by our paymasters.
@JGabriel: Once you have purified weapons-grade U, making a gun-type bomb isn’t all that complicated, IIRC. Making an implosion bomb from U or Pu (IIRC you can’t make the simpler gun design from Pu) is trickier, and miniturizing a bomb so it can be put on a missile is also hard.
But just producing “bombs” isn’t necessarily that hard. The difficult part is creating weapons grade fissile material to begin with. IIRC.
@FlipYrWhig: He was against foreign wars. He also was in favor of them. He also simultaneously took every other possible position on the subject.
What happened to Fix the Debt? Trump said yesterday he doesn’t care about deficits if he gets the giant tax cut.
Shouldn’t they be fanning out on cable shows? Can we all agree never to take any of them seriously ever again?
Should not be a problem to hide them. They can put them behind the wall of the 10M dead people.
@Iowa Old Lady: No love for Ike?
and 100-73 means that the percent of Americans who don’t want it investigated is… oh my. There we go again.
I’m sure others will chime in but my understanding is that the major candidates to run the country are all dead set against provocation or any brash talk, let alone action.
IMO the timing of their emergency election seems to be keeping them from speaking with one loud voice.
@Roger Moore: no, it should glow blue in the dark – like everything else will
I wondered that too, but I don’t think IOL is that old!
ETA: I was no fan of Gerald Ford, but I think I’d give him a pass on the “mental problems.”
@liberal: Because they don’t vote in our elections.
And another thing about North Korea… Does anyone think that the high-level cadres surrounding Kim Jong Un are always going to be completely honest with their esteemed leader? Do you see that little room over there with the anti-aircraft guns set against the wall?
No one has accurate information about what’s happening in North Korea, and that includes everyone in North Korea.
@liberal: Absolutely. But while we are waiting for our media betters to learn the lessons of history so recent that they watched it happen themselves (It’s ok, I can wait till you get your laughter under control again), here we nevertheless are. So what now?
@Corner Stone: Gail King tells me people loooove Ivanka.
In short, you can’t unfuck that chicken.
Too bad our betters do not seem to understand that.
@unknown known: you typed that and believe it?! LOL
NK is less likely to use nukes than either India or Pakistan (against each other). The NK leader is very aware that any attack with nukes against anyone – even China – would end in his death by nuclear fireball. That dumb fuck cares very highly about his own survival and would do nothing to endanger himself. All he is doing is trying to get support from us by forcing us to address his nukes with bribes like in the past (which worked.)
The orange fart cloud is trying to act as if he has a dick bigger than the NK leader’s and is trying to use this to get attention – a dangerous gambit and hopefully, he is playing his typical game of chicken were, once again, he backs down. Hopefully, our dumb fuck potus doesn’t try and order something very stupid.
Quick Takes: A Study in Contrasts
by Nancy LeTourneau
April 24, 2017 6:28 PM
POLITICAL ANIMAL BLOG
* Every time I read an interview with Donald Trump, I walk away horrified. At this point, I struggle for words that will capture his level of ignorance, delusion, narcissism and mendacity. But it also reminds me of who we’re dealing with. All those moments when the press tries to paint him as some kind of normal politician go up in smoke. That was exactly how I reacted after reading his latest interview with the Associated Press. In just one example, Julie Pace asks him whether or not he’ll sign a spending bill that doesn’t include funding for his border wall. Here’s his answer:
First of all, about half of that is completely unintelligible. But simply the mention of his “base” takes him off topic and he feels the need to pontificate on the one thing he always wants to talk about – his yuuuuuge electoral college victory. It’s now been over five months and he can’t stop trying to convince everyone what a big deal it was. Sad!
Hide the carnage? No, oh no. They’ll post it up front and center as evidence of what bad people the North Korean leadership are/were. The fact that anything we have done might have triggered them to act in this way will be considered excuse making of the highest order. It would never be our fault any more than it is that we’ve pushed a child into deep poverty, and they grow up bitter and with poor impulse control, and steal something from us. They are the bad one, we are pure of heart, end of story.
The Senate Used 46 Staffers To Investigate Benghazi, But Is Using Just 7 For Trump/Russia .
The cover up is worse than the crime meme is also being destroyed.
Cake walk people. This will be a cake walk.
The rational part of my brain tells me not to panic. Trump is extraordinarily lazy. Military action in Korea would unleash a complicated, interlocking series of events that would decimate his golf and TV time for the rest of the presidency. It would ruin his “investments” in China (and those of his vile spawn). We’ve seen how quickly he folded on health care and shutting down the government for a wall – he’s perfectly capable of slithering away quietly in defeat.
The non-rational part of my brain is, of course, curled up in the fetal position.
No idea about NK will or will not do. This statement that India and Pakistan are going to use nukes against each other is based on what exactly?
@Kay: So does that mean 27% don’t want an independent investigation? What is it about the number 27%? Is there some evolutionary advantage to having 27% of a given population be irrational and idiosyncratic if not outright stupid?
73% know that there aren’t that many coincidences in the Western World.
Iowa Old Lady
@El Caganer: I don’t have very clear memories of Ike, but I’ll concede that he was sane.
ETA: Oh, and Ford. SD is right on that one.
T will sign a sternly worded EO about a review of the NK situation with all the brass in his cabinet standing adoringly behind him and nothing will happen.
One of the most memorable lines from Orwell’s “1984” is “we have always been at war with eastasia”.
Actually, I think we’re waiting for Democrats to take over the House. And I hope no one takes impeachment off the table this time.
Congressmen Cummings and Chaffetz now saying that Trump is not sharing documents related to Gen. FLynn.
@GregB: This will be a cake walk.
@schrodingers_cat: I said that India and Pakistan are more likely than North Korea to use nukes against each other; never said they would nor can that be taken from that statement as written. I find it silly that someone thinks that the fat boy-king of NK would ever consider such a thing unless he thought his own life was gone anyway. Not happening.
As Malcolm Nance says, “Coincidence takes a lot of work.”
@Cermet: It’s moot anyway. The big threat from NK isn’t nukes. It’s conventional artillery in hardened bunkers leveling Seoul.
The only way to root those out would be nuking them, which would….level Seoul, and add a layer of radioactive spice on top of the debris. And the bodies.
The media might celebrate a few million dead Koreans, but I doubt anyone that owns a Samsung, Kia, Daewoo or Hyundai product would. Crass? Of course. But this is a society where things are more valued them actual flesh and blood people, so….
I think if you really wanted to kill the D party dead. Just nuke it from orbit, the move would be to flatly state this time that impeachment is off the table.
The Evil One done told you….
Deficits don’t matter.
I didn’t even get that until you pointed it out…
@Cermet: That is a totally reasonable read. But we still don’t KNOW it’s true.
And what do we do when Kim starts pushing to see exactly where the line is. Take a random example: let’s say Kim decides he needs to win his mini-feud with Malaysia, so he threatens them with nukes. Malaysia doesn’t have a nuclear retaliation. What if he actually does set off a small nuke there? Do we get into a nuclear war on their behalf? Do we do that, knowing it would set off a chain reaction shit show of carnage? And if we don’t retaliate for them, does that mean Kim has now learned he can now intimidate 95% of the world’s countries at will, and with little risk of retaliation?
If so, follow it a step further: Does that mean that every OTHER country in the world realize that they need their own nuclear arsenal (or to become a heavily dependant client of a country that does?).
Then follow THAT further: If half the countries get nuclear weapons, that’s more than a hundred world leaders with nuclear launch codes, What are the odds that at some point ONE of them does something stupid? I mean, we’ve already come within inches when it was just 5 countries, that were all (in theory) fairly stable mature powers. And we’ve already shown that (supposedly) mature developed sane countries like Germany and America can democratically elect unstable megalomaniacs, and we start multiplying all of these risks by an order of magnitude….
No, I’m not advocating we do anything rash, especially not something that will produce a lot of dead people pronto… And OBVIOUSLY Trump is about the worst possible person to be in charge of coming up with a non-insane response. I’m just saying that this isn’t a simple answer, and it’s not a snipe hunt.
see, that’s the beauty part, the flash from the nuclear bombs will make us all blind so no worries at all there.
@Cermet: This cannot be said enough times. NK is not going to use nukes because it doesn’t have to use nukes to unleash unimaginable destruction on the nation of South Korea and the city of Seoul. Nukes are the shiny object here that is distracting people from the fact that a war or military action involving conventional weapons would be catastrophic. Why China seems to think it will definitely be like the guy standing on the sidelines snapping photos of the collision is still beyond my comprehension. NK hates the U.S. and SK more than it hates China, okay, but that could change in an instant with such a mercurial and desperate regime as the one in NK.
See, you are ALREADY inserting caveats. We’re talking about a fat boy-king who is both paranoid, and who genuinely does have a lot of people who want him dead. And you feel secure hanging nuclear war from this thread?
Why are so many male journalists ganging up on Chelsea Clinton on Twitter?
From The GOS
Tuesday Apr 25, 2017 · 12:32 AM EST
O. Felix Culpa
I sure hope you’re right!
Enhanced Voting Techniques
I am almost shure this is Mr WWF-IS-AWSOME! idea on how to end the 100 days – blow shit up.
The Fix the Dept, are also a bunch of republicans and glibertarians, they are just like OMB Director and Hair Furor, the only bad dept is debt that helps people, debt for war and tax cuts is good. It doesn’t need to be offset, it always makes the country stronger and richer, just look at Kansas and Wisconsin, look at the wonders supply side tax cuts have wrought. These are the right type of tax cuts too, not like those namby pamby ones Obama passed that gave most of the benefits to the masses, these will go to the uber rich and businesses, who you know are the most patriotic, and will use those monies to benefit us all unlike the poor who waste them on the necessities of life.
I particularly love the “I don’t believe an unequivocal statement because I can think of a way to interpret it otherwise” tweets. She’s being much too polite to those people (although I understand she needs to be too polite to them).
@jonas: What freaking mess these folks will be running from in 3 months if this happens.
@Kay: The media were hoping he would start a war and didn’t want to risk telling anyone who might not like it.
@O. Felix Culpa: That has been his MO for most issues.
@hovercraft: I hope there are people going after these sexist pigs.
@unknown known: I don’t know, North Korea has agency too. Not every one of our enemies created a dystopian hell-hole. I wouldn’t volunteer to live in Cuba, for instance, but they can at least claim a few positives and they’re every bit as pooped on by the USA.
Well, it seems to me the first highlighted part does not quite match the second highlighted part. Show me why any new border security spending is needed.
@liberal: I’ll refer you to Sen. Graham:
““It would be terrible but the war would be over here (there), wouldn’t be here,” Graham continued. “It would be bad for the Korean Peninsula. It would be bad for China. It would be bad for Japan, be bad for South Korea. It would be the end of North Korea. But what it would not do is hit America [bold mine-DL] and the only way it could ever come to America is with a missile.””
The South Koreans, Chinese, and Japanese don’t matter to these assholes because they aren’t Americans (read: white people.) So long as war is kept somewhere else, they’re happy to bomb, maim, destroy, and kill millions to feed their egos and bloodlust.
And the media will fawn over their ‘resolve’ and ‘strength’ and show images of thousands of dead South Koreans with the propaganda that the evil North Koreans are monsters and that justified our first strike against their regime.
O. Felix Culpa
Good point. As with most bullies, he’s all bluster until someone calls his bluff. Then he folds.
This headline makes me laugh: White House considers ‘art of compromise’ to avoid shutdown. Translated: he folds.
and there is no declaration of war against North Korea in that list. So, actually, we have not been at war with this particular version of Eastasia.
So everyone knows that NK and Chiiina have a treaty where if we attack NK; Chiiina is obliged to defend it. What could go wrong. Also too, it would be our second preemptive war in a row, not that we are a warmongering nation or anything like that.
@catclub: We don’t need to increase spending on border security, but, at the same time, it’s a public good that everyone agrees we should spend at least SOME money on. That makes it a completely normal thing for politicians to haggle over, and make concession when they negotiate spending priorities.
What is NOT normal is to want to start funding construction of a big expensive wall that wall that is going to be useless at best, and significantly hurt your interests at worst.
That is the part that needs beating like a drum. It. Is. Not. Normal.
So why is the man in the picture holding an old-fashioned hotwater bottle?
@amk: IIRC, none of the appointed investigators have backgrounds in investigation or prosecution.
@Chris Fisher: I don’t think Sen. Graham has considered that there are plenty of ways of delivering a nuke that don’t involve a missile, particularly if you are a regime that has for decades traded high risk strategies for lack of military power.
@schrodingers_cat: To me, it sounds computer generated: Your call is importsnt to us. Please remain on the line. Still, it could be worse. She could sound like her father. I expect she’s had elocution training to prevent just that.
@hovercraft: One can be more popular than that crew and still be loathed by most of humanity.
@unknown known: Surely the lives of a few million South Koreans is an acceptable cost to gratify Trump’s ego.
Fixed that for you.
This argument resonates only with Democrats. Trump supporters want a wall. They need a wall. They yearn for a wall. In their dreams, they fling every illegal Immigrant Mexican over the wall after it has been built.
The cost of the wall does not matter because Trumpettes still expect the Orange Shitgibbon to stick it to Mexico and make them pay. And even if Mexico doesn’t pay in full, all the money saved by not having to pay for welfare for lazy Mexicans will yield a better savings.
Republicans and the Trump subset live in a parallel universe. And even more than repealing Obamacare, their top two wet dreams are the wall and a Muslim ban.
Mainstream Republicans promised to repeal Obamacare, but still got swept from the board in the primaries. Trump promised nutjobs their heart’s desire and gave them political orgasms.
@SiubhanDuinne: The joke at the time was, “He played football without a helmet”. Or words to that effect.
a thousand flouncing lurkers (was fidelio)
Fun fact: The Pet Shop Boys, 1980s electronic group, are still a going concern; with a album released only last year. One of the cuts, “The Dictator Decides”, seems appropriate here–or possibly in the context of Syria. Or both.
Other than that, I got nothing.
test. Does this work?
@O. Felix Culpa:
Only some of the idiot fundy hawk generals.
No sane enlisted or junior officer wants to start something with North Korea.
For starters we’re looking at 20,000 boots on the ground already stationed there becoming boots on a hill.
And that’s before the Sarin and VX warheads come into the equation. Not to mention the mine fields, the artillery, the submarines (fun fact, they were abducting Japanese citizens with them from Japan), the trenches and tunnels and gods only know how many portable shoulder launched missiles they have now.
Coupled with a military that’s been brainwashed into devotion to their leader and you get a meatgrinder only a complete idiot would want to stick their dick into.
Which is why Donald is champing at the bit, eager to get his pants off and let his freakflag fly.
And you would be wrong. They’re not insane.
@jonas: Its even worse then that. The agreement was holding until Bush decided (with Republican Congress) not to comply with OUR side of the deal. The North Koreans actually demonstrated a measure of tact (for them) and complained through official diplomatic channels, warning Bush that they’d consider the deal null and void if Bush didn’t provide the fuel oil we’d promised them would replace the energy from their shuttled nuclear reactor.
They opened up the reactor. Still no dice.
And so they reactivated, started making nukes and our conservative media let the story die on the vine.
Notice how every story now brings up nuclear NK, but never explains the origin of it.
It’s all a ruse. Trump’s getting them all together in an attempt to pitch them timeshares at Mar A Lago.
@mr_gravity: IIRC it was LBJ’s gibe at Ford-Not-A-Lincoln. Someone with a little finer sense of the absurd said that wasn’t the problem; the problem was that he played center at UMich, which got him used to looking at the world upside-down between his legs.
FTR Gerry Ford was Nixon’s attempt to replace his original Human-Impeachment-&-Removal-Shield, the unlamented Spiro T. Agnew, with an equivalent. No Democratic Senator of sound mind would have voted to remove Tricky Dick from the Presidency if it meant putting the repulsive Agnew in the White House, & Nixon knew it, which is why he didn’t dump him in ’72. Once he got caught continuing to accept bribes as Veep (& TBH the shocker was the tiny amounts in those white envelopes Lester Matz kept passing along; not just a grifter but a penny-ante grifter) & the U.S. Attorney sagely made resignation a condition of accepting his nolo contendere plea, the Trickster settled on a replacement widely considered an amiable doofus that (he was sure) no Senator of sound mind would vote to put into the Oval Office. (Fortunately for the nation, he was wrong.)
@Weaselone: Maybe one of use does not understand the definition of quagmire. It basically means a complex situation that has every possibility of becoming a clusterfuk. How is military escalation not a that?
Also, N. Korea is not about to start lobbing nukes at anyone. So I wouldn’t exactly call it a nuclear state. The biggest danger is the US bombing those sites and causing radioactive dead zones. Also the possibility of them lobbing dirty bombs at S. Korea. They can’t yet put a nuke on a missile.
The smartest option would be to keep doing what Obama did. Put pressure on China for economic sanctions and put in a missile defense system in the region.
Of course the tiny handed fascist doesn’t understand such complicated things. The only thing he knows how to do is wag this tiny dick around.
@TenguPhule: No more or less than N. Korea. I get the sense that you actually believe that nonsense they put about about nuking the US which is purely for their internal perpetually brainwashed population.
“Oceania has always been at war with Eurasia”
Ring a bell?
@nightranger: They can’t hit the North American part with a missile yet. Doesn’t mean they can’t hit me. Read up on the shit they’ve been up to since the war.
Hell, look what they’ve done LAST YEAR. A Sarin assassination of the leader’s half-brother in one of the only countries that didn’t completely despise and sanction them.
Planes and boats. Our first atom bombs were just that, bombs.
Delivery systems are only limited by imagination.
@unknown known: Don’t know. Don’t know.
@El Caganer: They have a lot of say. It’s not like we own the soil in SK where our troops are stationed.
@? Martin: My personal view is that the most logical delivery system for a NoKoNuke is a shipping container. US port security is pathetically inadequate (read this short article).
If I were Kim the Young’Un, I’d gin up a series of “P’yongyang candle” tests with spectacular failures built in, meanwhile sneaking 3 or 4 of these babies (fair warning: link to FTFNYT) into CONUS via big steel boxes labeled Samsung or Hyundai. Then I’d send in (by another route entirely) a fake nuke with a strongly-worded note enclosed (something like “If this had been an actual device, like the 6 already in your country, you & everything within 100 m would now be radioactive atoms”), tell Cheetoh Benito where to find it, sit back & watch the East Asian Conflagration Simulation unfold.
(Hell, I might just send the fake & dare them to call my bluff.)
@TenguPhule: What island are you on again? I mean besides some island in the Pacific. I plan to go back again one of these days.
@Corner Stone: The most important one. With enough military targets on it that our nuclear defense protocol is “Don’t tell anyone here what’s coming because they’re better off not knowing until the fatal flash arrives.”
Which of course has been undermined by the internet and cable news.
@TenguPhule: I want to go back to Kauai again. That was amazing. I thought the Big Island was ok but if I go back I will split time between Kauai and Oahu. Completely different experiences but both a lot of fun in their own way.
We were on Kauai sitting on a porch beachside in the AM about 50 feet from the ocean and the wind was just roaring. The surf was crashing and you could barely hear one another. That and going into the village, getting out of the car and looking straight up at green mountains with fog and mist at the tops.
J R in WV
@O. Felix Culpa:
This shit makes me glad that even though I’m a veteran, I’m 66 and disabled so the won’t try to draft me, and we’re childless, so they can’t draft my kids!
I have a basement room that could become a fallout shelter pretty easily, 8 inch reinforced concrete walls and ceiling, would need a heavy wall in front of the door with a dog leg, filtered ventilation, supplies, batteries/pedaled generator/solar panels. Is that crazy or simply planning for the worst case?
I would rather not die from radiation poisoning if I could prevent it for a few hundred dollars and a couple of weeks work…
@Corner Stone: Sounds like you went before Iniki. And before lots of Kauai was sadly bought up by billionaires with money to burn. Still a nice place to visit, but not so nice people have made it a bit less friendly for locals and tourists in recent years. If you have a chance, check out Maui and visit the mountains for the view. Makes you feel very small in a big world, but in a good way.
Also, they have our only Krispy Kreme outlet.
@J R in WV:
You prefer death by starvation or mutant zombies instead?
Stepford is all I can think about when I watch/listen to her speak.