Wednesday, June 29, 2016

NAFTA, pro and con

According to Wikipedia (a reasonably impartial source)  NAFTA dropped tariffs between the three countries to zip in nearly all cases by now.  It took President Bill Clinton's best efforts to get NAFTA ratified over the dead bodies of US unions. NAFTA did increase trade between Mexico, Canada and the US by a lot, perhaps 50% over the years since 1993 when NAFTA was ratified.    It also did contribute to US job losses of maybe 500,000 jobs.  These numbers can be controversial, but Wikipedia is the most balanced source I am aware of. 
   We had The Donald on TV yesterday trashing NAFTA up one side and down the other.  He promises to "renegotiate" the NAFTA treaty.  He claimed that NAFTA is a US job killer.  In this, he has, or ought to have, the warm support of US unions who have been anti NAFTA since the beginning. 
   We had the "three amigos) (Obama, Trudeau, and I can't remember the name of the Mexican president) on TV today.  All saying nice things about NAFTA, and the need to keep it going.   
   Nobody said anything about admitting the UK to NAFTA. 

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Why we need President Trump

Best reason.  If elected, The Donald might actually do something in office rather than just going with the flow.  The polls have 70% of the population saying America is on the wrong track.  Trump might get us back on the right track.  Hillary won't.  She is totally owned by Wall St and special interests (who paid $40 odd million for her).  She thinks things are just fine, and is promising not to change anything.
    Of course, it would be nice to know just what Trump might do in office.  So far his campaign promises have been either vague, or improbable.  He needs to work on that.  At least he isn't owned by any one. 
   Trump is loyal to the United States and to its people.  Hillary is only loyal to Hillary.  I really do think The Donald will act in the best interests of the country.  He may not always get it right, but he will try.  Hillary is more interested in lining her own pockets.
   Trump does know something about business in the real world.  He has survived, and even prospered in the New York real estate business, a very tough business.  He knows how to read a balance sheet, he knows the difference between income and expenses, he knows what it means to meet payroll.  I doubt that Hillary even knows how to balance her checkbook.
  Trump might even fix the federal income tax.  Close every loophole, lower every rate.  Hillary won't do that.
  Trump won't try and take everyone's guns away.  Hillary will.
  Trump will sign an Obama care repeal.  Hillary won't.  Obamacare is such a drag on business that it has sucked our GNP growth down to less than 1%.
  Trump will nominate decent Supreme Court justices.  Hillary will pack the court with lefties. 

Benghazi, more stuff they won't talk about.

I posted about the firing of US general officers shortly after Benghazi.  Right here.

Benghazi, what they don't talk about

We have Trey Gowdy on TV right now, and as you might imagine, what he is saying isn't very complementary to Hillary.  He is urging everyone to read his 800 page report.  Whew. 
   Trey never talked about air support, or the lack of air support.  We should have had fighters over Benghasi within two hours.  We have plenty of fighter bases and aircraft carriers in the Mediterranean.  They should have had alert birds standing 5 minute alert.  That's what my old USAF fighter squadron did 50 years ago.  We kept two birds, fully armed and fueled, on five minute alert 24/7.  Pilots sitting in the ready room.  Occasional scrambles, just to make sure everything works. 
   I will grant that supersonic fighters are not my first choice for defending a consulate on the ground.  But having fighters overhead would be a tremendous morale boost for the defenders on the ground.  A low level pass, supersonic, is very discouraging to attackers.  Even more discouraging when you do a little strafing on the way.  And the fighters can get there faster than anything else.
  Along with the fighters, we should have dispatched armed troops by air.  Helicopters if  they are close enough, fixed wing if not.  For fixed wing, the troops parachute in, or the aircraft lands on the closest airport. Surely Benghasi has a city airport.  C-130's have been landed on aircraft carriers, which means they can get into any imaginable airfield, no matter how puny.  
  Finally, Trey Gowdy did not talk about the two US general officers who were relieved of duty that very night.  These two officers were canned for preparing to send relief forces to Benghazi.   

Monday, June 27, 2016

What's the difference between Brits and Scots?

An election map of the Brexit referendum shows everywhere in England except London, voting Leave, whereas every place in Scotland voted Remain.  The dividing line between Scottish Remain and British Leave is very sharp and follows the old border between England and Scotland.
   The TV newsies have been yacking about how the Leave voters were all working class blue collar people and the Remain voters were all London financial system operators.  Maybe.  But why does all of Scotland want to remain, whereas most of England wants to leave?  I haven't heard any TV newsies pontificating about that. 

Sunday, June 26, 2016

The McLaughlin Shouting Hour

There were on for their usual half hour this morning.  And not a word was said about Brexit.  I guess the show was taped sometime before Friday, when the British referendum results came out.  They did talk quite a bit about Venezuela's collapse.  The liberal members of the show (most of 'em) tried to explain the Venezuela problem as anything but socialism.  Yeah right.
   The also talked about NATO's plan to station ONE battalion (1000 men) in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, and Poland.   Total 4000 troops.  This is nothingness.   Four divisions, 40,000 men would be more like it.  Hitler launched a hundred divisions in 1941.  Then there was some yellow belly talk about how the Baltic states don't really matter and we should not be risking war with Russia over them .  I'll admit that war with Russia is a real downer, but letting the Russians take over free and independent countries sticks in my craw. 

Who is Tim Kaine?

I never heard of him.  Beat the Press was pushing him as Hillary's VP this morning.  They had him on the show.  He sounded like a perfectly ordinary middle aged pol from Virginia, nothing outstanding.  But he surely has a name recognition problem.  I'm a political junkie, and I never heard of him before. 
  Good luck Tim.  You will need more support than just NBC to make it.