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drray23's Journal
drray23's Journal
March 22, 2022

Is there one republican on Judge Jackson hearing

who actually asked legitimate questions that are pertinent to Judge Jackson nomination to the Supreme Court or are they all spewing right wing hate ?
I can't bring myself to watch..

March 9, 2022

Hopefully the tech described in this article has been perfected and is operational..


In a first-of-its-kind test, the United States has successfully used a small, ship-fired missile to intercept a target Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM), according to the Missile Defense Agency. The successful test shows the U.S. military now has another missile defense system capable of defending against North Korean ICBMs aimed at the United States.

This was in 2020. That particular test was with a system deployed from a navy ship. Apparently, we also have ground-based ones. Back then, the threat was possible North Korea launches of ICBMs.

Now, obviously North Korea, if they had ICBMs (I don't think they do, just medium range missiles) would be only a few of them. Russia can launch 6000 at a time.

If we have not ramped up since 2020, the current events may motivate the US to gear up. I do not know how many years it would take to have enough of these deployed and effectively have an iron dome neutering any saber rattling by Putin.

Nevertheless, its encouraging and it may mean that in the short to medium term (a generation?), ICBMS will be rendered useless.

March 3, 2022

President Biden SOTU speech was so incredibly good

It was so well received by the vast majority of americans, greater than 70 % at last count depending on which poll you look at. Even the Washington Time had a good article about it.

In times of crisis, President Biden unique ability to connect with people is an asset that maybe the white house should use more. Not only is he excellent at it, that form of communication - i.e big, televised speech on every network and cable outlets reaches everybody regardless of their political leanings, it allows for bypassing the usual media bias.

Unsurprisingly when told the truth in a rational and empathetic way people understand it. This reminded me (sort of, I was not born) of the FDR fireplace chats.

I wonder if the white house could come up with a way to do something similar so that they can stay connected with the public. The question of course is, would the networks carry it if it was a regular thing or is this kind of gravitas only a once-a-year thing provided by the SOTU?

March 2, 2022

Would NATO intervene if Putin triggers article 5 by invading a NATO country

or will there be some advocating for not doing so in fears of triggering ww3/ nuclear war ?

If that's the case Putin holds all the cards and there is nothing that can be done.

March 2, 2022

Is there a trigger for actual military intervention ?

I know that we don't want to get involved directly for fear of triggering an all out war. I do wonder if that calculus changes if Putin starts mass killings by leveling cities with millions of people in it like Kyiv and Kharkiv.

Do we just stand there watching, wearing sunflowers and blue and yellow or does this motivates NATO to establish air superiority to stop it ? We did it during the Bosnian wars over Sarajevo.

It all hinges on whether or not western powers believe Putin would use nukes if we ground his air force over Ukraine.

March 2, 2022

I've yet to see Manchin converse with a democrat.

He is not even pretending to be a Democrat anymore. He is mingling with the gop senators, flanked by Mitt Romney.

February 28, 2022

Putin is precipitating an end to Russia and its satellite countries

Or at least an end to their hegemony in eastern Europe. His actions unified Europe like never before, NATO is strengthened and the international community at large is imposing crushing sanctions making Russia a de facto Pariah on the world stage both politically and economically.

Client states of Russia like Belarus who are getting dragged in it will suffer the backslash as well. I suspect that the political and economic pressure will be so big that their economies will collapse accelerating the protests that are already taking place there and ultimately leading to the overthrow of these dictators.

As for Russia, Putin will end up being "retired" in a Datcha somewhere while somebody else takes over and hopefully steer that country to a more reasonable direction.

Anyhow, we will see how this unfolds soon enough or if my analysis is just completely off base.

February 27, 2022

Looks like Ukrainians maybe blowing up fuel depots.

There was a huge serie of explosions on the outskirts of Kyiv at a military airport installation.

You can see that on the clips CNN showed. Some experts are saying it could be deliberate to deny Russians from fuel for their tanks. It would be a smart move, cut their supply lines and they will fail. Napoleon ran into this issue fighting Russia of all places..

February 16, 2022

Price of oil and Ukraine

I am wondering if Putin's strategy is not to actually invade Ukraine but instead make it look like he will in order to drive the price of oil. Its Russia's main source of income. I am not an expert in geopolitics, so I looked it up.
It does look like some analysts have been considering this possibility. For example, the financial review has an article about it:


After all, the cost of a long and sustained war in Ukraine could be devastating to the Russian economy.

Raising the prospect of a war however has immediate benefits such as making the cost of oil skyrocket, making Putin look strong domestically and may be enabling him to extract concessions from NATO.

We shall see in a few days if that was the goal all along or if instead, he really wants to invade and recreate the eastern block.

February 9, 2022

Why is the media still carrying the narrative that the GOP will win the house in 2022 ?

I understand that initially it was reported that the gerrymandering was such that it gave them a huge advantage.

However, it is turning out that it is not so cut and dry and the democrats may actually hold an edge instead of being heavily handicapped.

So why is this narrative still prevalent? Is it just because the media is too lazy to reassess, that they are going with the usual "the party in power loses the midterms" or something more nefarious? (Maybe to drive down democratic voter participation?)

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