Trade Chess With China

Indulge me if you will, and read the article at the end of this link:
Trade Chess With China

Sundance runs a good site and is one of the few who have followed the economics and strategy game afoot.

Please remember, Trump is playing against the Chinese ‘One Belt, One Road” empire plan, the short term players in the west I call the Global Grifters and the entire entrenched political establishment. It amazes me he has gotten this far.

While we can fret about the staffing of questionable holdovers in many agencies, his trade team is top notch and having way too much fun. I do believe that has always been his main game.

It is nothing less than changing the entire flow of world civilization at stake. Can one man make that much of a difference?

He will have no similar successor, but if he can move the momentum to economic nationalism and true fair trade , he may make successors have no choice.

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Another Surgery, Another Show….

The Red Headed Irish Wisecracker commented this AM while driving to the hospital. “It it’s Tuesday , it means the Curmudgeon is having surgery”

Two weeks ago it was a long planned cataract, a welcomed procedure.

Today it was a lucky happenstance. A minor infection in a delicate area led to a cat scan, which led to a kidney stone that was perched in what the Urologist described as a ‘dangerous location”.

So off we go to one of my least favorite procedures. Actually, the procedure is a true 21st century thing, it’s the real annoying and embarrassing recovery that sucks.

We live in an age of commonplace miracles. A stone was a death sentence not two hundred years ago. Today, they use a tiny fiber optic filament inserted in an existing access portal in the male body (one you are born with). At the tip is a tiny ccd camera, and tiny led light and an official Dr Evil ‘frikking laser’. They blast the offending stone into particles and withdraw.

Meanwhile , you are out like a light with propefol, which keeps you out for 20 minutes a dose and metabolizes in minutes from your bloodstream. You wake up like you just had the best sleep ever and no residual effects.

Then the fun begins as we revert from effortless 21st century to old fashioned biologic recovery involving slow removal of the particles with natures favorite reminder of violation of body balance.

For a basic citizen with Medicare and Blue Cross, it was a well managed and highly capable affair.

So life goes on, with a bit more grimacing for the next few days.

Sorry I missed the call, but I was otherwise occupied.

We have for now a really fine but not perfect healthcare system which provides great care to most and I would not swap it for anything run by lawyers and grifters.

18+

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Weekend Cruising

Sunday at 2pm one of us decided to go somewhere. This week, the adventure target was the Deschutes River Conservancy Area near Maupin , OR.
The other one decided it had potential, so off we rolled in the F150.

I love day trips. The weather was perfect, sunny along the whole route and all we needed to do was grab a travel mug of coffee (Try Black Rifle, I recommend highly) , a bag of beef sticks and grain free granola bars, the new camera and off we rolled. All else is in the truck at all times.

We had not done the run over Mt Hood in a while and it did not disappoint. The momentous presence held our gaze for miles as we drove over the southern side. We descended through the forest of ponderosa pine to the beginnings of the high desert as we crossed the Warm Springs Res.

We found Maupin, and I was able to out route the GPS by the unique human ability of looking at another map so we arrived just around 5pm at the Deschutes river.

River here was placid .

River here was not.

So we came home via the Columbia Gorge on I 84. Here is a shot upriver at near sunset.

And here is an unloaded coal barge heading back for another load shot downriver.

A good time was had by all.

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A Curmudgeon Copes With Living at an Inflection Point in History

The Forces are gathering against the Guy From Queens. They have become enraged at his obstinance, his insistence on standing his ground after every onslaught they have thrown.

They have moved from accepting a delay in their timetable to a realization that their very grand plan may be in peril.

In other words, he is making them crazy.

Right now, his opponents are escalating erratically and giving him exactly what he has needed.

The Media was first. They have proven to be liars, anti American and complete partisans. They have also proven themselves to have no sense of humor or even self awareness.

The Europeans were next, including Canada. The keepers of the world order of posturing while the US pays the bills and takes the risk have shown themselves to be incapable of running their countries. Their working classes are less and less trustful of them and their climate change scams, mass immigration and more at the expense of citizen taxpayers are coming aground.

The Democrats, the regular army infantry of the global elites, are stuck in the trench war of their own making. They cannot get past the trap they set for Trump they now find themselves in. Their donor base wants impeachment and their candidates are a confused mess. If they withdraw, it will be seen as surrender by their most loyal donors and voters. If they proceed, well, they get nothing to show against an opposition party that has some serious tangibles to parade.

President Xi is finding he was outmaneuvered and his bluff was called. He now must revert to hardball against foreign companies to maintain some semblance of control of a sliding economy. It forces investment out and makes partners skittish to do business.

Last, the Never-Rights, the GOPe? Their major puppet master, the COC is now being forced to operate directly with Mexico versus the White House. This is a very bad look in an election year. Their Senate sock puppets will find it hard to join their chorus of pro open borders from the Cartels and their guy in office down south.

How did this happen and why?

Why?-In order to change the direction , many of these bad actors needed to publicly do something stupid of such a magnitude that a large portion of the voters can see it as obvious. The ultimate reality show script. This was what Trump wanted.

How? In every case, POTUS offered a fair deal and was rebuffed, ignored or ridiculed. Then their own momentum was exaggerated, made public and amplified. By the simple act of him not backing down and having a constant set of moves for the next step, each was led to the frenzied state of self destruction they now inhabit.

A lot is coming to a head all at once. It has something to do with this diagram:

How will it turn out?

My prediction? I am betting on pretty damn good but taking reasonable precautions. Moving away from urban cores in blue states is my number one assumption of serious short term disruption.

So me, I accept that things are going pretty good, and many people I see and talk to share the feeling. People are spending, investing in the future, buying cars, houses and capital equipment. In other words, they are tired of the world ending, America is doomed, the Japanese, Arabs, Chinese will own us all in ten years, our best days are past us.

Optimism is a serious drug. The party that sells it in the next election will attract some votes.

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Serenity As A Time Share

It being the Red Headed Irish Wisecracker’s birthday we headed to the Ridgefield NWR, which is only seven miles from where our new home will be.

Memorial Day weekend weather here in the Wet Northwest is soggy, with 99.9% chance of overcast except for brief gorgeous sunshine, deep blue skies and white cumulus clouds if you act without hesitation.

So we fired up the F150 and our new Canon SX70 and went in search of sunshine and wildlife.

Flashing my $10 vintage lifetime Curmudgeon pass to all Federal lands we arrived and enjoyed a serene and gorgeous afternoon.

Still getting the hang of handholding a 65 power telephoto with live subjects, even with image stabilization, so bear with me.

None of these animals watch CNN, FOX, MSNBC or read blogs. I do understand they are arguing about the ending to GOT. Apparently , some were rooting for Drogon and the winged faction was quite pleased.

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Welcome Back My Friends To The Show That Never Ends….

We have reached a nexus, a tipping point, where one deflection may echo down the centuries.

As the remnants of national democracy align against elite totalitarian rule, USA, Japan, India , Brazil and Trump versus China and the Globalists….

As the media/democrat/deep state complex holes up in the Fuhrerbunker of Impeachment…

Trump has unleashed the BARR and given him the power to destroy by truth.

A mistake or overreaction could result in blood in the streets or worse, legal action.

Tread lightly, trust no one, always have an exit plan.

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The Un-Terminator

Today I am recovering from eye surgery.

So by now I have two artificial lens in my eyes, several stainless steel bolts in my arm and a sensor patch on my left arm for monitoring blood sugar.

I wear a biostrap, shoepod and chest unit which records blood oxygen, resting heart rate, active heart rate, heart rate variability, steps taken, sleep levels and reads my workouts individual exercise data. I have an ekg unit that reads a two lead ekg and connects to the web for AI based analysis, soon to be replaced by a six lead unit.

Ah, the brave new world that has such creatures as us…

We are well on our way to cyborg living.

It beats driving your body without gauges.

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Raising the Barr

I am enjoying the heck out of watching a real patriot warrior in our new Attorney General.

I do believe he is not a partisan other than to the law and the institutions he treasures, the DOJ and what it is supposed to mean.

He is not a Trump loyalist other than to the office he holds, and that is perfect. He operates predictably out of principle to right wrongs and fix the mess, rather than patch it over.

I do not believe he is a starry eyed optimist, his performance shows he understands the Washington game better than his opponents.

Trump right now does not need loyal fools , he needs gunfighters. The kind who do not wilt under fire, unlike the last Attorney General.

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Curmudgeon Musings -Weekend Edition

How do we heal this nation?

Can this nation heal and become a shared society?

Looking at the long game ahead, I do believe this country is the most divided and polarized it has been since 1860.

We have people who view themselves as Americans. We have people who happen to live in America.

We have enclaves of intolerance, we have thoughtcrimes and we argue over words versus deeds as the primary concern.

We have the most incompetent and greedy political class since Versailles.

While all this is underway, cities are becoming economic dinosaurs, attracting the young adults. the poor and the wealthy while corporations and the middle class flee to financially advantageous locales. The urbanized municipalities and heavily urbanized states are breaking down with fiscal contradictions.

Higher education has priced itself out being a reasonable investment for all but a handful. Public education is mired in a labor intensive model that is more focused on public sector employment than results.

Society will rebuild itself whether we want it to or not, it cannot remain static while these trends are underway.

We will emerge as a balkanized nation or a single one at some point. The road there will be quite rough.

All we can do is help the children of today acquire the skills they need to thrive. The ruling class has given up on them.

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Curmudgeon Musings Over Iced Tea At Night

I am watching the parade of presidential wannabes, even the new McMuffin Bill Weld, and they all have that same characteristic…

They are all grifters on the legal/political con game. None bring much of anything of long term achievement. Sure, they have punched their tickets for the credentials, Law School, Oxford, Rhodes, and all seem to have worked in failing cities and state governments.

In other words, they are credentialed yet worthless when it comes to actually making change, or grasping the real problems facing us. They all exude the same idea of “if you just say it the right way, it will be fine” as if you could survive a tsunami by negotiation.

Eisenhower had a track record of getting stuff done. Reagan had a track record of getting stuff done. Both saw the needed future for the country and set about to make it happen.

Trump to me is of the same mold. A doer.

It seems the USA gets one like that every twenty to thirty years.

I hope we can still recognize the need.

I remain optimistic that at least the working class still has the instincts to know a doer from a talker. I am sure the comfortable elites have lost it if they ever had it. That is the divide on which our future hangs.

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A Curmudgeon Apologizes

In haste I posted what in hindsight was an incomplete thought in my post about “Enemy Cutting His Own Throat”.

Rather than explain my thinking I posted “2020 will be a choice of prosperity with a flawed but fun guy who delivers and an opposition playing to maybe 25% of the country”, I rushed to the main point, leaving many to wonder about the apparent insult.

Having been involved in serious negotiations and deals, I always assume POTUS is capable of subtlety, patience and sophistication when handling a win win with very capable people. He certainly has more capability in this than almost all the professional politicians in DC.

He is hardly a buffoon, a boor , but consider this: In my opinion, he finds it advantageous to play one for his enemies and then present a human persona to his supporters. Until Trump came along, presidential candidates had to be perfect, polished and glib symbols of the media. His calculation is that this came off to the most well grounded voters as phony and condescending.

He knows the media and he understands imagery and emotional communication. He also understands story lines and arcs.

He is sophisticated enough to have his granddaughter serenade President Xi in Mandarin and yet he knows when to say Bullxxxt in a tweet.

He knows that the liberal creator of the show “All In The Family”. Norman Lear assumed Archie Bunker would be the villain and the son and daughter (Meathead Reiner) would be the heroes. Lear hated that Archie become the most sympathetic character and got all the good lines.

Presenting yourself as flawed but capable is genius of the highest order in today’s politics. It insulates you from little attacks and promotes trust in people. Who is more trusted, the rough edged man who delivers what he says or the polished perfect guy who talks and never delivers?

When I say he is running as the flawed candidate who delivers, I believe that is his intentional strategy.

Very smart and very sophisticated strategy. No buffoonery here except in his enemies in the media.

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Helping Your Enemy Cut His Own Throat…

The drama is playing out rather well for the good guys and gals….

The Democrats took the bait of the Mueller report, the report that the Andrew Weissman types could not resist producing. They are like addicts to Trump hatred and going sane is not an option.

The worst thing for MAGA would be for the Dems to walk away, say “Glad it turned out OK” and get to work on winning in 2020. Talk about real issues, even with their nonsense proposals.

Trump needs them crazy and mean. We need them crazy and mean. The Media have chosen to also be crazy and mean.

2020 will be a choice of prosperity with a flawed but fun guy who delivers and an opposition playing to maybe 25% of the country and alienating blue collar and lower middle white collar families.

McGovern, Mondale were tigers compared to the crew showing up now. The only one with a hint of brains is Mayor Pete, but he has chosen to be a mean gay guy instead of a lovable gay guy. He is also a blocking move by the DNCe anyway for Biden.

Enjoy the show. Maybe we can get them impeaching. That might be the 1789 moment for the aristocracy…

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Awareness stops by…

Today I had an awareness visit. It does happen at random intervals to a Curmudgeon, usually when one least expects it and it makes one stumble going down stairs.

I watched our Attorney General today doing his job his way, oblivious to the whinings of the beltway boobies squawking about him.

I have seen it in Pompeo, in Nunes and a few others. People with a mission.

Trump is an unworthy man on a worthy mission and he means to achieve it at all costs. He is gathering about him a handful of capable folks who are also accepting a mission to make their part of America Great Again. I see in Barr a man who is now grasping that he must make Federal Justice work again and will do what it takes to move to that goal.

As we approach Easter weekend, the parallels offer themselves up.

We have had a Judas, and Trump will need a Peter to be the rock of American Greatness.

It will be one of the ones who are unnervingly grinding forward on their mission.

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Long Game

I sometimes despair at the punditry these days. Shallow and never seeing the long game.

We all know the showdown in the next round of the Deplorables vrs the Global Elites will be fought with messaging and image, and the winner needs a clear majority of people who turn out to vote..

The Mueller report by the Attorney General contained a tactical win and a strategic maneuver if you view the long game

Much has been said about the lack of a decisive call on ‘obstruction” by the Mueller team and it has succeeded in allowing the Global Elites to grab and chew on the possibilities of a victory.

Short term thinkers view this as a problem. It can be looked at a positioning strategy.

I do believe the worst outcome for the populists and POTUS is for the Democrats to accept defeat and begin fighting on more tangible issues. POTUS is well aware of who he needs to convince to side with him and what he needs to do about it.

The best outcome is to leave the thread of obstruction so the Globalists continue to look crazy to normal American taxpaying private sector employed voters. Trump won last time as a potential candidate, now he runs as an incumbent and he needs to appear the calmer, saner alternative.

What better way to do that than to allow the insanity to continue.

He will be running directly for people who care not for scandal, virtue signaling and silliness, but jobs, stability, peace, safety and prosperity. He will run on that for all races and ages that profile as responsible working Americans who are not creatures of government.

Last time I looked, that is one helluva majority. My guess is serious people outnumber virtue signalers by two to one if you have a message and track record they believe in.

The Dems may deeply regret the popular vote stuff they are pulling as I expect POTUS is going to go for the popular vote this time.

The behavior of the electorate in the last few cycles has been driven by the fact that neither party was convincingly offering what they wanted.

That will change this time. We are about to have a clear choice again, like 1980 and 1972 . The serious voters will have a meaningful choice.

The daily buzz speaks to the virtue signalers. The impression for the serious voters is the long game.

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