Saturday, August 18, 2018

Slow Saturday Special: Globe Hates a Parade

Cost too much, they say:

"Trump blames D.C. officials for postponement of military parade" by John Wagner Washington Post  August 17, 2018

WASHINGTON — President Trump on Friday blamed local officials for his decision to postpone a grand military parade in Washington this fall, alleging without evidence that they had unreasonably inflated the price.

So the Washington ComPost (owned by Jeff Bezos, of all people) and wingman on the lies that got us into Iraq is complaining about no evidence being offered, huh? 


‘‘The local politicians who run Washington, D.C., (poorly) know a windfall when they see it,’’ Trump wrote on Twitter. ‘‘When asked to give us a price for holding a great celebratory military parade, they wanted a number so ridiculously high that I canceled it.’’

Trump said it was possible the parade could be staged next year if the cost ‘‘comes way down’’ and added that with the savings ‘‘we can buy some more jet fighters!’’

I'll get to the reporting on the budget he just signed below.

His tweets came a day after the Pentagon said the planned Nov. 10 parade might be postponed amid questions about the event’s increasing costs.

About an hour after the president’s tweet, Mayor Muriel E. Bowser of Washington, a Democrat, delivered her own caustic response on Twitter.....


"Trump signs defense bill named for McCain, but doesn’t mention him" by Jill Colvin Associated Press  August 13, 2018

FORT DRUM, N.Y. — President Trump on Monday signed a $716 billion defense policy bill named for John McCain but included no mention in his remarks of the Republican senator, who is battling brain cancer at home in Arizona.

Trump and McCain are engaged in a long-running feud that dates to Trump’s 2016 presidential run.

Honestly, I'm so sick of the politics of personal invective and celebrity. You can blame Trump if you want, but the media plays right along. 

At campaign rallies, Trump regularly castigates McCain — without outright naming him — for casting a dramatic thumbs-down vote that doomed Trump’s effort last year to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which was enacted by President Barack Obama.

Trump said there was ‘‘no better place than right here at Fort Drum’’ to celebrate passage of the defense bill, which will boost military pay by 2.6 percent, giving service members their largest increase in nine years.

The bill — formally named the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act but referred to by Trump as simply the National Defense Authorization Act — will introduce thousands of new recruits to active duty, reserve, and National Guard units and replace aging tanks, planes, ships, and helicopters with more advanced and lethal technology, Trump said. ‘‘Hopefully, we’ll be so strong we’ll never have to use it. But if we ever did, nobody has a chance,’’ he said.


I suppose I read that with total naïveté, hoping that he is sating the war machine to keep it off his back. That's how low my expectations and goals have dropped since starting this blog. When I first started it was about ending the wars and bringing peace. Now I'm just hoping that my president doesn't start any more wars after the last guy added three more -- one winding down, fortunately, and thanks to Trump. He ended official funding of the Syrian rebel terrorists, although one would be a fool to think the CIA isn't going rouge and continuing covert funding.

The bill also authorizes billions of dollars for military construction, including family housing.

Besides setting policy and spending levels, the bill weakens a bid to clamp down on Chinese telecom company ZTE. It allows Trump to waive sanctions against countries that bought Russian weapons and now want to buy US military equipment.

The bill provides no money for Trump’s requested Space Force but authorizes the military parade he wants in Washington in November. The White House has said it will outline a budget for the space force next year.


So we still won't know what is up there.

The measure also addresses child-on-child sexual assault at US military bases worldwide, an issue an Associated Press investigation revealed this spring.

SeeUS military overlooks sex abuse among kids

The haze has started to clear.

The compromise bill removes a provision reinstating penalties against ZTE and restricting the company’s ability to buy US component parts. ZTE was almost forced out of business after being accused of selling sensitive information to nations hostile to the United States, namely Iran and North Korea, in violation of trade laws.

Trump warned in May that the ban was causing heavy job losses in China, and the Commerce Department reached a deal to lift the ban in June, allowing business with US companies to resume. The bill retains language blocking US government purchases and contracts with ZTE.

As you can see, bu$ine$$ with China is more important than the kids (and isn't that who parades are really for?).

The measure also includes provisions designed to improve how the Defense Department handles reports of sexual assaults among the tens of thousands of children and teens who live and go to school on the military bases where their parents serve.

Among the changes, the bill creates legal protections for students at Department of Defense Education Activity schools and requires the school system and the Pentagon to develop new policies for responding to reports on bases more generally. Schools and the armed services also must start tracking incidents.

The annual measure sets policies and a budget outline for the Pentagon and will be followed by a later appropriations bill. 

And then it can disappear like the rape issue years ago that is now hardly ever covered, if it is mentioned alt all.

Trump and McCain have had a strained relationship for years. During his election campaign, Trump declared that McCain, who was a prisoner of war for more than five years in Vietnam, was not a war hero, and he has publicly and privately blamed McCain for defeating the Republican health care bill last year.

In May, a West Wing aide dismissed McCain’s negative opinion on Trump’s CIA nominee during a closed-door meeting by saying of the senator that ‘‘he’s dying anyway.’’ Trump, who has long prided himself on never apologizing, believing it shows weakness, did not apologize, but the aide was later fired.

Theresa May did get an apology, but it still wasn't good enough for the media. 

McCain expressed pride in the bill in a Twitter post.

‘‘I’m proud the NDAA is now law and humbled Congress chose to designate it in my name. As chairman of the Armed Services Committee, I’ve found high purpose in service of a cause greater than self — the cause of our troops who defend America and all that she stands for,’’ he said.


Then the Globe pi$$ed on it:

"The Defense Department said Thursday that the Veterans Day military parade ordered up by President Trump won’t happen in 2018. Colonel Rob Manning, a Pentagon spokesman, said the military and the White House ‘‘have now agreed to explore opportunities in 2019.’’ The announcement came several hours after reports stated the parade would cost about $92 million, according to US officials citing preliminary estimates more than three times the price first suggested by the White House. According to the officials, roughly $50 million would cover Pentagon costs for aircraft, equipment, personnel, and other support for the November parade in Washington. The remainder would be borne by other agencies and largely involve security costs. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss early planning estimates that have not yet been finalized. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said late Thursday that he had seen no such estimate and questioned the media reports. ‘‘I’m not dignifying that number ($92 million) with a reply,’’ he told reporters traveling with him to Colombia. “I would discount that, and anybody who said (that number), I’ll almost guarantee you one thing: They probably said, ‘I need to stay anonymous.’ No kidding, because you look like an idiot.’’

There they are, standing there with their dicks out.

The parade’s cost has become a politically charged issue, particularly after the Pentagon canceled a major military exercise planned for August with South Korea, in the wake of Trump’s summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Trump said the drills were provocative and dumping them would save the ‘‘a tremendous amount of money.’’ The Pentagon later said the Korea drills would have cost $14 million.  

So what is your point? 

Regardless of the parade, I don't want provocative war games off the Korean coast anyway!

What is it about the pre$$ and their hatred of any flinch toward peace?

And how come when it comes to the war games, they suddenly no longer give a damn about climate change?

The parade was expected to include troops from all five armed services — the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard — as well as units in period uniforms. One veterans group weighed in Thursday against the parade. ‘‘The American Legion appreciates that our president wants to show in a dramatic fashion our nation’s support for our troops,’’ National Commander Denise Rohan said. However, she added, “we think the parade money would be better spent fully funding the Department of Veteran Affairs and giving our troops and their families the best care possible.’’

Now that you bring it up, the Obama-era neglect of veterans is down the old memory hole.

Trump decided he wanted a military parade in Washington after he attended France’s Bastille Day celebration in the center of Paris last year. As the invited guest of French President Emmanuel Macron, Trump watched enthusiastically from a reviewing stand as the French military showcased its tanks and fighter jets, including many US-made planes, along the famed Champs-Elysees."

What the Pentagon is reluctantly planning will not come close to showcasing how the American military actually fights because there will be no drones in the sky, and did you know "the Pentagon has made a series of little-noticed announcements recently on the need to rejuvenate and expand U.S. nuclear capacity and doing all it can to make clear it is preparing for an era of nuclear buildup."

Just wondering if those will be included in the parade as well.