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Archive of Articles in the "Foreign Policy" Category

Friday Talking Points -- The Calm After The Storm

[ Posted Friday, September 30th, 2022 – 17:00 UTC ]

We've long thought that America is at her best when disaster strikes. We've thought this since the massive 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, in fact, which we rode out in San Francisco. And we saw firsthand that when life is disrupted, it is disrupted equally. Everyone is affected, so everyone puts aside all their differences and just pitches in to help in the immediate aftermath. Maybe this is a rosy-tinted view, but it still holds mostly true.

Case in point is Hurricane Ian, which just devastated Florida and seems on its way to devastate the Carolinas next. Ian has been one of the biggest hurricanes in American history already (fifth-largest, from one news report) and we haven't even begun to comprehend the scope of the damage or how long it will take to recover from it. The damage isn't even over yet, and most of the East Coast will at least get some heavy rains before Ian disintegrates.

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Friday Talking Points -- Trump's "Secret Telepathic Unilateral Preemptive Irreversible Declassification" Defense

[ Posted Friday, September 23rd, 2022 – 17:26 UTC ]

We do try to avoid it in general, but this week it is impossible not to lead our news wrap-up with the ongoing Donald Trump Follies. Spoiler alert: it wasn't a very good week in Trumpland.

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The Lame Duck Will Be Busy

[ Posted Monday, September 19th, 2022 – 14:34 UTC ]

The lame-duck Congress, which will take place from just after the midterm election to the end of the calendar year, is shaping up to be a rather busy one. This isn't too unusual, since punting things to the lame-duck period is always a tempting option for politicians worried about their re-election. But this year's lame duck might be more significant than most, because of what is being teed up for it. They'll only have two months to act on all of it, minus all the breaks they'll take for the November and December holidays. And it looks like they'll have a lot to get done.

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Friday Talking Points -- Ukraine, Trains, And Lindsey Graham

[ Posted Friday, September 16th, 2022 – 17:13 UTC ]

We fully admit that headline isn't really close enough to the original to trip off the tongue very well. But we're in an optimistically cheerful mood, so we're not going to change it.

These were really the three big political stories of the week. Last weekend saw the culmination of an incredible performance by the Ukrainian military. Within a week, they had retaken over 2,000 square miles of their country, as the Russian invading forces mostly just fled. That is beyond impressive, and may prove to be a real turning point in the whole war.

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Ukraine Makes Huge Battlefield Gains

[ Posted Monday, September 12th, 2022 – 15:18 UTC ]

It was perhaps badly-timed to get the world's media attention (due to a royal death sucking up all the media oxygen... which it continues to do...), but nevertheless the Ukrainian military just had a stunningly good week.

In one sector of their country, they achieved what can only be called blitzkrieg -- "lightning war." Their forces set out from Kharkiv and within days held not only Kupiansk and Izyum, but all Ukrainian territory -- right up to the Russian border -- which is west of the Oskil River. The BBC has an update on just how stunning a development this truly is:

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Friday Talking Points -- Winning The Culture Wars

[ Posted Friday, September 9th, 2022 – 17:07 UTC ]

For decades now, Republicans have very effectively been using "culture war" issues to entice voters to vote against Democrats. Democrats are routinely pictured as being out of the mainstream and out of touch. This used to work wonders for them. But the shoe seems to be on the other foot this year. This shift is mostly due not to Democratic politicians switching tactics so much as the electorate itself changing its mind on a number of big culture war issues.

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Honoring The Queen At The U.S. Capitol

[ Posted Thursday, September 8th, 2022 – 15:53 UTC ]

I am giving into groupthink today, and thus for the first time I am going to write a column about the Queen of England. Her death today was not exactly unexpected, but it still came as a shock to the United Kingdom and all other British-affiliated countries around the world. Queen Elizabeth II ruled long than any other British monarch, and their history stretches back a lot longer than U.S. history, so that's a pretty astounding feat. What this means, however, is that Britain (and by extension, the rest of the world) hasn't seen a royal funeral for a sitting monarch since 1952. It's been a long time, in other words, so few people alive today have any idea what to expect from it.

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The Media Now Has No Excuse For Avoiding The Tough Questions

[ Posted Tuesday, September 6th, 2022 – 15:55 UTC ]

Last week, President Joe Biden gave a rather pivotal speech. In it, he called out and denounced Donald Trump and the extremist "MAGA Republicans" who are supporting him and following in his footsteps. There were varied reactions to this speech, but Biden is not backing down, raising the point in all his appearances since, using similar language: The MAGA Republicans are a threat to American democracy, plain and simple. They do not support the rule of law and they are not just sympathetic to but sometimes openly supportive of using political violence to further their aims and prospects. That should be seen as anti-American by everyone, immaterial of party, Biden pointed out.

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1,000 Words

[ Posted Wednesday, August 31st, 2022 – 15:51 UTC ]

Adages aside, you've got to admit the photograph the Department of Justice included in last night's late-night filing of their response to Trump's lawsuit (to get a special master appointed to review documents seized from his Florida golf resort) is indeed a doozy.

It shows a slew of documents spread out over the floor in a room that had been searched. This is just the contents of one box that was seized (as the "2A" label indicates), mind you.

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Friday Talking Points -- Banana Republicans

[ Posted Friday, August 19th, 2022 – 16:51 UTC ]

President Joe Biden had a very good week the previous week, and he followed that up with another good week this week as well. A bill which is going to become one of the signature pieces of his presidential legacy passed the House last Friday, and on Tuesday Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act into law. Perhaps we should call it "Biden's Obamacare," because it really is just as impressive a piece of legislation.

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