In international relations, is the world as wide open as it was in the 1930s when legends like Hemingway were made? Or did our post-WWII efforts to avoid war as a remedy to conflict by adopting international laws amount to anything enforceable? What if the parties refuse to act in good faith? … More Wishes for the Fishes: China and the Law of the Sea
At the end of February 2020 Governor Jay Inslee of Washington State issued Proclamation 20-05, which reported as of then there were over 85,000 cases of COVID-19 worldwide, and 66 in the United States. As of today there are more than ten times that number worldwide and over 80,000 in the United States. Seattle is … More Pestilence and Death, Famine and Destruction
David Rothkoff, host of my favorite podcast, Deep State Radio, but in real life an accomplished professor of international relations, coined the phrase recently, we are “Present at the Destruction”. This comment was a riff after the 1969 Dean Acheson’s book about his years at the State Department was published, detailing the prewar and post … More Present at the Destruction
What a dork! Off to the Junior Prom in the mid-1970’s, he has his whole life ahead of him, believing everyone more or less lives by the same template; get an education, find a girl, marry, then settle down raise children. Repeat in the next generation. With this presumption on board I got to college, … More American Pie- Fair Comment
It’s a random war without front lines. All of us are soldiers. At stake is liberal democracy and our way of life. What is it Mel Gibson said in Braveheart? “They can take our land but they cannot take our freedom”. Today it is the other way around, they cannot take our land, but they … More Manchester. United.
Here is what President Reagan said at the Brandenburg Gate thirty years ago this June about the Berlin wall: “General Secretary Gorbachev, if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, if you seek liberalization, come here to this gate. Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate. Mr. Gorbachev, tear down … More Mr. Trump, Tear Down This Wall!
This morning there is another story about someone in Arabia shooting at our ships. This isn’t the first time. About 220 years ago the United States faced seizures and enslavement of crews from it’s merchant vessels trading in the Mediterranean Sea. Congress appropriate money for the construction of six frigates to ensure freedom of navigation. … More Barbary Pirates Again
In a time of great anger at how things have turned out for the USA, in a time when we want an America back we think once existed, it is hard, at best, to watch one of the institutions of my childhood commit suicide. What used to be a reliable source for all things American, … More Tears for Sears; A Big Box Retailer Commits Suicide
“Democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts and murders itself. There was never a democracy that did not commit suicide.” John Adams April 15th, 1814. I awoke this morning to find the British have done just that. For a long time I have postulated the American Revolution was a mistake, we would have been … More Democratic Suicide
A man is interviewed in his living room in Aleppo, Syria about the war. On the wall behind him hangs a velveteen painting of dogs playing poker. He wears a North Face jacket. The BBC interviewer seems oblivious to the odd aspects of this scene, and really wants to know more about how the man has survived … More The Absurd Optics of Globalization