Presidential Debate Night 1: Drinking Game Rules

Debate night is upon us. Hillary versus Donald. Clinton versus Trump. America versus Russia. However you’d like to slice or dice it. Below are my suggested rules for tonights discourse. If you have any suggested changes or additions, please comment below or send me a Tweet!

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Threats work: Lyin’ Ted Cruz endorses Donald Trump

Yesterday, in a stunning about-face, Texas Senator Ted Cruz declared that he is in fact a “servile puppy” who will endorse a man who lobbed insults at his wife and father.

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The Rule of Law, and Trump’s utter disregard for it

Donald Trump suggests that he would institute nationwide “stop and frisk policing” to crack down on crime, a tactic already ruled unconstitutional.

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America under attack. Not by terrorists, but from within.

The gods smiled down at Donald Trump last weekend, bestowing him with the gift of two terrorist incidents to further incite his supporters.

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Eric Trump: Liar? No. Dishonest? Absolutely. 

“Figures don’t lie, but liars figure.”

That phrase was once shared with me by an accountant. Well, not once, it was something that he repeated over and over through the years. And nowhere is that more evident in the ramblings of his kids. Let’s look at Eric.

Continue reading Eric Trump: Liar? No. Dishonest? Absolutely. 

Republicans Pass the Buck on 9/11 Lawsuits

The Republican-led Congress has again put politics before country in voting to allow citizens to file lawsuit against Saudi Arabia in connection with the 9/11 attacks, forcing President Obama to veto the bill.

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North Korea flexes its muscles, again 

Some time last night (for those of us in the Western Hemisphere), North Korea conducted another nuclear test to celebrate the anniversary of its founding in 1948

When the news initially broke it was reported to as earthquake, but that idea was quickly debunked by ever amateur observers. A user on Reddit going by seis_matters  quickly pointed out:


While there will certainly be some strong words in the coming days, it’s not at all clear what the world can take to reign in the DPRK’s behavior. 

Sanctions?

The country is already one of the most heavily-sanctioned in the world. And while it receives food aid, cutting that off would only cut the lifeline of people living under the current regime. The government already prioritizes its military over everything else, so food shortages would land squarely on the general population rather than the military, and certainly not the leadership. 

Attack?

We could follow in the other tradition, the one that says that with the worlds most powerful military as your hammer, every problem looks like a nail. 

That approach is also untenable. Aside from the enormous loss of life that would be caused on both sides of the conflict at the northern end of the Korean Peninsula, the DPRK is known to have its artillery aimed squarely at Seoul and missiles that can reach Japan, and has given assurances that it would use them if attacked. 

Any other options?

Its hard to imagine any other options. The leadership in North Korea is “pot committed” at this point – there is no way for them to gracefully cede power and disappear into the night, as, even if they received assurances of safety from other countries, there are literally millions of people who would not rest until they extracted each of their pounds of flesh from the leadership that has caused them such harm. 

What other options are there? Smarter people than me have puzzled over the situation for far longer, and so far the best anyone has come up with is to leave them to themselves, but even that is not tenable. As a nuclear armed state, starved of resources, and with a penchant for selling whatever it has to to insure its survival, non-confrontation runs the risk of it transferring dangerous technology to other pariah states. 

No solutions. 

I am interested to hear what Donald Trump would propose. Actually, no, I’m not!

Apps, data usage and privacy – a change of topic

I’m a diehard fan of iOS, and rather fond of Mac OS X as well. That doesn’t stop me from investigating the alternatives on occasion. Thanks to Oracle’s VirtualBox, it’s a cinch to keep up to date with the basics for new Desktop OS’s, whether it’s a new version of Windows or an updated Linux distribution. Mobile OS’s, though, are a much bigger challenge to evaluate.

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Is the best way to fix a broken system is to hire the people that broke it?

Donald Trump on October 26, 2016:

Donald Trump Tweets on SuperPACs

Donald Trump on October 27, 2015:

Super PAC’s are “one of the great scams of all time… it’s a disgrace that we have them”.

Donald Trump on March 10, 2016:

These Super PACs are a disaster by the way, folks, very corrupt. It’s going to lead to a lot of disasters … There is total control of the candidates. I know it better than anybody that probably ever lived … I know the system far better than anybody else, and I know the system is broken. I’m the only one up here that’s going to be able to fix that system because that system is wrong.”

Donald Trump on September 1, 2016:

Screen Shot 2016-09-02 at 8.00.06 AM

Yes, that’s correct. In less than a year, Donald Trump has gone from calling out SuperPAC’s as one of the greatest scams ever, to hiring Citizen United’s President David Bossie, the man most directly responsible the court case that allowed for their creation.

Nothing should come as a surprise. This is the person that decried “Hedge Fund guys“, and then went on to bring John Paulson onto his economic advisory team. At this rate, one can only assume that he’s putting out feelers to the head of the Islamic State to see if he’ll provide advice on how to best go after the group.