Tuesday, 17 September 2019

The Stein-McMuffin-Johnson Factor

In 2016, the number three, four and five candidates in the election took home nationwide....6.7-million votes. 

Compared to 2012?  1.85-million...more or less.

Compared to 2008? 1.4-million....more or less.

Compared to 2004?  1.0-million....more or less.

The last time, you had a serious run with other 'candidates'?  1968, with George Wallace (alone) who had 9.9-million votes.

So I'm going out on the limb and predict that number three, four and five candidates in 2020.....will not be able to pull more than 1.5-million votes.  So this 5.2-million standing there?  Depending on what state they are attached to....I think you could see more than two-thirds of the group align with Donald Trump. 

This is what the Democrats really have to worry about.....this optional 'other' candidates not affecting the 2020 elections for other individuals. 

States like New Mexico, Minnesota, and New Hampshire that were marginally won by Hillary Clinton?  Now easily within range of Trump. 

Just something to think about. 

Sunday, 15 September 2019

My Humble View of the Felicity Huffman Episode

Basically, you had a parent with tons of money in their pocket and a non-productive kid who just wasn't that remarkable in high school.  You went to the folks in the middle, laid out the cash, and did what probably 10,000 parents across America do each year.....you bought a 'chair' in some educational enterprise, and gave the unremarkable kid a free degree. 

You can look around today at literally thousands who've passed through this system, and become a noted personality or political figure....who are not really gifted or bright, or remarkable. 

The system caught up with Huffman, judged her....and passed a hefty fine with two weeks in some jail.  So in 2019, you caught and judged one parent of the ten-thousand.  No big deal.  The system continues on. 

Drones, Oil and Saudi Conflict

If you go and follow the latest, there was a drone used to 'bomb' a Saudi oil processing facility.  Damage?  The Saudis say that 50-percent of production is temporarily shut off for a while.  Location?  It's about 50 miles west of Bahrain, and fairly deep into the landscape of Saudi Arabia. 

Accusations?  Well....Saudi Arabia has been on an aggressive front with Yemen (to the south) for a full year.  The rebels down in Yemen have had serious Iranian backing, and there's some belief that this drone.....was a Iranian drone.  If true, it's likely the Shahed 129-model.  A one-way mission for the drone?  It's believed that once in flight, and on a one-way mission....it could cover just over 1,000 miles. 

You can go and measure the range from Yemen to Buqayq and it's easily within the range. 

So what happens now?  I'm guessing a number of Saudi executives and VIPs are fairly angry.  This reduction in oil production comes at a bad time.  The Saudis are in desperate need to sell, and it hinders their production....maybe for three or four months.  Blame shifting to Iran?  If they prove it was a Iranian-made drone, there's going to be thought-process required....how do you pay back Iran.

The Iranian Abadan Refinery site?  It's likely to be the response target....easily within range of the Saudis. 

The problem with this business....once you start retaliation, they counter-retaliate, and then you get a counter-counter-retaliation situation.  You could see a whole bunch of oil facilities shut down within a sixty-day period, and gas suddenly going up to $7 a gallon. 

Drawing the US into this?  If this were George Bush, it's virtually guaranteed.  But with Trump?  I have my doubts that the US really wants to get involved.  But you have to ask this question....if the Saudis got peeved enough and blasted the limited gas production capability of Iran....where the Iran-consumers simply didn't have gas for any car travel....how quick would this whole Iran-Mullah business unravel?  A civil war created in a matter of two months?  That's how this could fall apart and make things into a bigger mess.

So settle back and watch the 'show'. 

Saturday, 14 September 2019

Seattle Idea

So I noticed today that Seattle has a politician who is now pushing the idea of setting up a city-fund....where you'd go to a homeless guy, and offer a one-way bus-ticket.  You agree to leave....we pay for your ticket.  I'm guessing you might get a box-lunch deal out of this too, but that would just add $7 on top of the $50 one-way ticket.

The odds of this affecting people living on the street in Seattle?  I would take a guess that fewer than 200 people might take the deal.  Why?  Well....if you are homeless in Seattle.....it isn't that much better to be homeless in Salt Lake City, or Dayton, or Birmingham, or Chicago.

In fact, if you figure weather and pro-drug attitude....Seattle, Portland, LA and San Francisco win easily over the next 300 cities beyond the west coast.

But what would prevent some small group with an agenda from placing two or three fake homeless guys into the Seattle community, and just having them talk continually to forty homeless folks on a daily basis....promoting and selling them on the idea of leaving Seattle for LA?

Propagandists?  Yes.  Imagine these three guys just selling five people a day into moving to San Francisco or LA, and in a year....you've decreased the homeless population in Seattle by 1,600 people.

Unethical?  Well....yeah, that's a possibility that the accusation might come up.

But let's be honest, nothing else seems to really lessen the number.  And that cost-factor of roughly half-a-million seems to be very reasonable if you consider you'd need to spend ten times that amount if you just kept the 1,600 in the city.

Friday, 13 September 2019

Last Nights Debate

All total, I've probably watched around 70 minutes of last night's Democratic debate.  Some of it early this morning....some of it later in the day. 

So I come to three observations:

1.  Joe Biden is about ten years beyond his prime, and this attempt to put his name up in the primary period is failing.  Maybe the Joe of 1999 was capable of the situation, but this Joe of 2019 simply has run out of 'pep'.

2.  Beto, I think, came away with the drama statement of the evening....on the AR business.  Beyond that, I didn't see anything else that Beto could do much.  Pretty weird.....a one-scene act for the whole evening.

3.  Finally, maybe it's just me.....but after the 70 minutes of clips and the two hours of thinking about it....it seemed like a Saturday Night Live 'special'.  Beto was playing Beto.  Joe was playing Joe.  Booker was playing Booker.  Yang was playing Yang. Warren was playing Warren.  Maybe it was the way I pieced the clips together, or just their talking.....but it just seemed like a comedy. 

I kinda hope it improves by January, because if it doesn't get better....it's a pretty pitiful race for 2020. 

Beto and His AR Comment

".....a weapon designed to kill people on a battlefield...."

There yesterday, Beto laid out his plan to exercise some type of executive order to go and offer a chance to turn your weapon in, or have the cops come later to take it.  The key phrase above....was where he left you and your imagination.  The problem here....virtually every single weapon you find for the past 500 years....was originally developed for some type of battlefield. 

None of this 'chance-business' or the cops-coming-later is really detailed out or explained to the general  public.  It was good for the audience, but beyond that....it's really left to your imagination on how this would work.

Bows and arrows were designed originally for the battlefield....would they eventually come for them?  It's a big unknown.

Sabers were designed for the battlefield....would they come for them?

When Beto talks about the 'cops'.....which cops?  Most state cops are going to decline the order to go out and confront people....unless there's twenty cops in the group, and it's clearly understood that you may have to kill a dozen people today, in order to take a dozen AR or AK type weapons.

Would this be left for federal cops to enforce?  I'm guessing various state law enforcement groups would just decline the directive.

But this all comes back to an election, and if the one and only topic of the election is anti-gun strategy.  Could you mount a national campaign in 2020....strictly on this one single topic?  I have my doubts.  Could you even convince a majority of Democrats to go along with this idea?  Well....in states like Tennessee or South Carolina....I would suggest that at least 50,000 Democrats in both states own AK or AR type rifles.  They probably would not agree to this idea.

So I come to the theatrical side of this.  There's some folks who suggest that Beto is purely a drama-queen now, and as bad as Trump might be.....they really don't want a drama-queen as president.  They may have a point there.

Thursday, 12 September 2019

How Much of the Impeachment Chatter Involves a Schedule?


I'm one of those people who've spent a fair amount of time studying the idea, and how it would fall into place, and later, how it would ultimately fail.

So to the schedule business.  Basically, the House needs to wander around and reach the paperwork hand-off to the Senate around June (preferably the end of the month) of 2020.  Why?

During this build-up and bluff period...there's the primary period, and the big-name media types (CNN, Washington Post, NY Times, NPR, etc) will harp that even if they vote for Trump....he'll be impeached.  The Republican Convention?  Well....in 2020, it's 24-to-27 August.

Will the Senate pick up the impeachment at early July?  I'm not convinced of that.  There's supposed to be a summer period of recess that would start around the last week of July, and go for an entire month.  So you'd have to start this in early July, and conclude the thing by the recess period. 

The odds that Jeb Bush will be pulled up to be the alternate 'fix-this-mess' candidate in the month prior to the convention?  I'd say it's near 60-percent.

The outcome?  I anticipate this impeachment routine to run around five weeks, with the Senate voting down the impeachment.  Hurting Trump?  I'm not convinced of that.

And if the impeachment fails, with Trump winning in November....then what?  This is a empty sheet of paper for the Democrats in 2021, if they fail.  The House could fall back to the GOP, and Trump would have two years to really reshape his situation.

The schedule matters....but it's a one-star schedule with no great ending.