Encore of Revival: America, July 22, 2019

Washington is all excited because this week Mueller is scheduled to testify, again, about a report he already handed in. If the report had said enough on its own then there would be no need for him to testify, again. Democrats are all excited, but not as excited as Senator Graham, who plans to launch his own investigation investigation.  While Washington is distracted with theatrics of Russians and the “fab four”, a much deeper problem is swelling, one which will not escape Trump’s tenure unchanged: social media.

Social media giants are out of control. One current argument on the table is to make Google’s “index” public.

This “index” is Google’s inside stockpile of information that a “Google search” queries. Right now, it’s on lockdown and no one can access it without going through Google. Making it public would allow anyone to use it—if they know the right code, which code monkeys could learn. And, that’s where the trouble is…

Publicizing Google’s search index would be difficult to prove because it would need a new computer language—or API—to access. What’s to keep Google from making that API language too difficult to use? And, what’s to ensure the same idiots in Washington who tried to ram SOPA & PIPA down everyone’s throats—or wondered if Hillary wiped her server “with a cloth”—would know whether Google is making the API too difficult to use?

It could be done. It would need oversight. It should apply to Yahoo, Microsoft, and any other publicly traded tech giant with a search index. And, it would be a game changer.

According to Bloomberg, Google gets over 90% of all search traffic; Microsoft’s Bing at second place gets under 3%. That’s a lot of power to be in just one place.

While the current thinkers have “thunk” up this as the way to regulate Google under laws governing “public utilities”, there’s another important argument to consider. Google’s search index isn’t an index about Google’s own intellectual property—Google’s search index is an index about private information owned by everyone. So, the real question is whether it should be legal to “index the public”, which is essentially what Google does. If it’s legal to “index the public”, then of course the public should have access to that index, duh.

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Encore of Revival: America, July 15, 2019

Justice Roberts doesn’t believe that the citizenship question in the upcoming census is about voting rights. He’s right, it probably isn’t. A more believable reason might have been to confirm the accuracy of immigrant statistics from other Federal reports. A better census question would have been multiple choice: citizen, green card, other visa, and entry not requiring visa—nothing incriminating about that. Putting the question on a separate form from the rest of the census form would skew the data to protect privacy. But, SCOTUS wouldn’t allow the question as presented for the reason as defended.

We have two big issues with this ruling. First, if census questions are too invasive, people won’t answer them, then the data is less accurate. Second, remember: The Supreme Court always votes in favor of the Court, more than Right or Left politics, more than constitutionalism or idealism. And, as we should expect from hard-working law school grads, supreme justices love to penalize sloppy homework.

If we wanted to know Roberts’s politics, the defense should have provided a better defense. Trump shouldn’t have let his lawyers give lame reasons for relevant questions because the true reasons are good enough: The government wants to know the accuracy of other reports. Now, those other reports will be collected, collaborated, and cross-referenced instead, which might have been a better rout in the first place.

The Democrats enjoyed the younger generation of voters accusing anything and everything of being about racism, even when it wasn’t. It came in handy as a wild carded, one-shot-for-all silver bullet for rebutting opposition to Obama. It helped them get elected under the auspices of fighting a never-ending battle that had to continue. But, when one such young person got elected, it messed with the non-democratic rank-and-file culture of the so-called Democratic party. Now, Pelosi and AOC are in a cat fight. The problem is that people care. It’s not news, it’s just politics as usual. Maybe it’s a nice wake-up call to what is usual in Washington.

Just as usual is the scandalous underbelly of Washington, including Epstein. When he was caught up in scandals with Democrats, he didn’t matter. Now that they can’t keep their underage pimp afloat, the salvage operation in the Washington spin-control department wants to tie Epstein to Trump to at least get some return for their great loss. They’ll have to find someone to replace him now. And, they’d at least like to say the same for Trump, but they can’t.

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Encore of Revival: America, July 8, 2019

Trump’s tanks were unimpressive—that’s what Russian pundits think, anyway. Bringing out these old, beat-up, partially-disassembled relics of past victory and sacrifice proves nothing important. Parades should tout the latest, most intimidating, most high-tech muscle the military can muster. By all those standards, Trump’s parade flopped. Instead, he celebrated America’s heart and heritage—all things unimpressive in the eyes of Russians pining for their old imperial days of glory gone bye.

The Left, on the other hand, thought it was too much. JFK and Clinton celebrating bravery with marches and fly-overs were good, until Trump did it, then they weren’t. Perhaps next year’s Independence Day could host a bilateral talk between the Left and their recently-estranged Russian comrades.

Russia and America’s Left weren’t the only ones trying to tell Trump what to do. A leak from Britain’s Daily Mail shows disdain from the ambassador of the failed administration. Some suspect an attempt to influence fast-approaching election politics in the UK by painting Trump as the villain. More likely is a rogue, self-appointed hero who doesn’t like the manners of movers and shakers, pretending that his experience as an ambassador means his personal value for fecklessness should “trump” the White House, as it were.

Newt was the most out-spoken for Trump. He thinks not invading Iran was smart and that Trump is making all the right decisions on his successful path to re-election 2020.

Some important things happened in Civil Rights. The Republicans missed two great chances on these.

California finally passed a law, more or less, seeming to clarify what kinds of haircuts are natural for Black people. Though it doesn’t fit with the conventional Right of 20 years ago—always turning away from “touchy-feely” laws—it’s about time. What is wrong with Black people wearing dreads, anyway? Dreads are the easiest way for Black people wear their hair if they don’t go to the barber every other day. Why was this political and why was the law needed? The reason is probably because most White people don’t know that Black people need an entirely different kind of clippers at the barber shop. Some sad Republican politician who didn’t know as much just might complain about Cali, then lose his seat in 2020.

A DA in Philly won’t fine people in poverty beyond restitution anymore. Crime will be prosecuted, of course. Damages must be paid, of course. But, there’s no point in fining someone $1,000 who can’t pay rent and barely affords a car that’s worth less. Such a fine would effectively make the sentence an eviction. Current laws might as well say, “This crime is punishable by two weeks income if you’re middle class, an afternoon round of golf if you’re rich, and eviction if you’re poor.” Why didn’t Republicans make criminal and traffic fines proportional to income already? With the income gap gaping so wide, fines shouldn’t be measured in dollars, but in percentages. Some Republican politician probably won’t know that either.

Speaking of Republicans, Justin Amash of Grand Rapids’ district in Michigan took Independence Day to announce his independence from the RNC. His statement appeared as an Op-Ed in the Washington Post. Maybe he’ll be the one to start the People’s Party.

Whether it’s the communists in Russia and America quibbling about tanks in parades, getting Republicans to get along, being aware that Black and White people have different hair, or considering that flat fine rates aren’t fair, America has a lot to learn. We’re learning, we’ve come a long way in 243 years, we’re not there yet, but we’re inching along alright. We’re inching along.

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Encore of Revival: America, June 24, 2019

Our president called off an invasion that could have been what the Bay of Pigs was to JFK. We were on the brink of nuclear war with Russia 58 years ago, and we didn’t even know it! What is the value of a human life compared to a drone? Isn’t the purpose of drones to spare human life? Some would use the loss of a drone as an excuse to end human life, but not our president.

Strategy and navigation that win always elude the untrained mind. What seems to most people like the way to win is precisely how to lose. What seems idiotic to most people is the only way to win. Trump’s ongoing fight against establishments in both Asia and Washington prove who is on which side of the “which way is wise” debate. One of those important, counter-intuitive strategies is mercy.

“To err is human; to forgive, divine,” wise words, courtesy Alexander Pope. There are many traps in politics. It is an indication of scruples and wisdom to know how to navigate through them. Refusing to murder in vengeance of a downed drone is no sign of weakness, but a sign of strength. Trump did far worse to Iran than any could imagine: He showed mercy.

That was just the beginning.

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Encore of Revival: America, June 17, 2019

The US could be looking at war on at least three fronts—as if things heating up in the Far East weren’t enough. Two oil tankers were bombed in the Middle East and the Arab Prince blames Iran. The US claims to have evidence. Now, Senator Lindsey Graham is calling for war in Cuba to curb war with Venezuela.

All this international conflict is outshining the Left’s ever weakening calls against Trump. But, the Left doesn’t give up easily.

The summary of Robert Mueller’s argument against Trump is that Trump tried to stop an investigation known to be fake. A group of people started a fake investigation against Trump, they broke the law, along with customary rules and ethical precedent. Mueller thinks Trump tried to stop this lawless, no-rules, fake investigation. Because of that, Trump “interfered with justice”?

Financially, the term for Mueller’s side of the argument is called a “hostile takeover”. That happens when one company wants to buy another company. The buying company just lies and makes false accusations until the other company is weak, then everyone says, “Well, I guess there is no choice except for the one company to get what it wants and buy the other.”

If Trump had a kind of “technical foul” in stopping Mueller’s fraudulent investigation, it would be Mueller, not Trump, who would have obstructed justice for creating the unlawful situation in the first place.

Democrats want the documents, hoping that the people won’t see the deeper matters of justice and who started the baseless fight, rather than honoring the man who ended a fight that never should have started to begin with.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, June 10, 2019

Chinese rhetoric spiked over recent weeks. They made threats. Trump made threats. They made more threats. Trump and Xi are BFF, just like Xi and Putin, but Xi and Putin are BFF-er. Now, we move toward quiet action. If China stops exporting “rare earth metals” to the US, the US would simply get them from somewhere else. “Rare” means many countries can get them, but few actually do because China does it so much.

The US is selling several tanks and tank-buster rockets to Taiwan. Beijing isn’t happy—about the $2 Billion in weapons sales to Taiwan, but also because of the people who publicly express memory of what happened 30 years ago at Tienanmen Square.

Around the time Taiwan’s primaries finish, the US launches its first Ford-class carrier in October, larger than a Nimitz. It still has a year of training and won’t be commissioned until 2022.

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