Don’t look now but fall is just about upon us. The oh too short period of clement weather and bountiful harvest that leads to brief moments of frivolity before the serious impact of winter. A time for finding a good leaf pile and jumping in for the sheer escapism and harmlessness. It’ll get serious again soon enough.
Leaf Pile #1: President Donald Trump in the last several weeks has moved into a mode of what he feels is bi-partisan outreach. Frustrated with the glacial pace and compromises he has had to abide working with his own alleged party, the Republicans, president Trump has lurched to the left, reaching apparent agreements with Democrat leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi, on controversial issues such as extension of the national debt ceiling, the DACA program, and potentially a larger amnesty agreement that would essentially undermine the entire logic of his Presidential campaign, to block and reverse illegal immigration and Build the Wall.
That would be of course, as Trump has previously referred to them, “Head Clown” Schumer and “Loser” Pelosi. The same Minority Leader of the Senate and Former Speaker of the House that have accused him of working with Russia to undermine America and would impeach him if they ever returned to power. Such frivolities! The multi-dimensional chess the President is playing is to somehow get the Senate Majority Leader McConnell and Speaker of the House Ryan who he has just humiliated, to work with the Senate Minority Leader and former Speaker of the House that want to impeach him, on Health Care, Immigration and Tax Reform that will define his legacy and the nation’s future, as interpreted by a main stream press that wants to destroy him, driven hopefully by the support of his voters who he has just sold out by his immigration decisions, organized by a White House staff that has been turned over three times, and in the end, stand astride the achievements like a colossus….that is one big leaf pile.
Leaf Pile #2: Kim Jong Un is playing a game he has invented called, “Light The Candle”. Every two weeks he sends up a ballistic missile over the Pacific to see how close he can come to inciting the US, Japan, and South Korea into responding and starting a massive conflict that risks drawing in the participants as well as China and Russia into a cataclysm. Now that would be shooting a small candle and igniting a whole candelabra. As Kim is the third generation of Kim to hold the title of Supreme Destroyer of North Korea, has determined to outdo his father and grandfather in making life a living hell for the poor unfortunate 25 million Koreans who ended up on the wrong side of the 38th parallel in 1953. In addition to the concentration camps and secret police dominating a cowed population, he is experimenting with the effects of massive sanctions imposed by the other players on his creaky economy in energy products, such that if the people of his country had a job to go to, they wouldn’t be able to get there. Luckily, the only job to go to, is working for the Kims or the military. Progressively threatening the largest military power in the world, hundreds of millions of people with nuclear attack, and destruction of four of the world’s largest economies is a strategy that is unlikely to end in stalemate. Too bad we can’t pull the “go to Jail” card.
Leaf Pile #3: The plan of genius strategist Abu Bakr al -Baghdadi to take over the world by restoring the islamic caliphate through the armies of ISIS has led to an incredible leaf pile. Follow closely. Taking advantage of the Syrian calamity, Baghdadi established his caliphate in Raqqa, Syria in 2013, rapidly subsuming most of eastern Syria and Western Iraq, managing to kill thousands including the genocidal actions on Arab Christians and the Yazidis and displace millions in his drive to Mosul, Iraq, which he conquered in 2014. The caliphate now astride thousands of square miles of territory, now did what it was designed to do, kill Muslims. The Sunni caliphate reached the gates of Shia Baghdad, leading the world’s largest Shia nation, Iran, to come to the aid of the Iraqi government. Which lead to the eventual driving out of Mosul of ISIS. The desperate Yazidis fell back into the hands of the Kurds, who eye Mosul someday for themselves, and are a persecuted minority in Iran. Turkey, which hates ISIS, hates the Kurds more, and alternates between supporting and fighting ISIS. The Americans, who pulled out of a stable Iraq and ignored the conflict in Syria, were forced to return to support the Kurds and Iraqis to drive out ISIS, but not help too much and give Iran functional control of Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon. Russia, whose client Syria, was nearly destroyed has buoyed up the Syrian President Assad, who literally everyone hates, risking direct Russian and US conflict within his own country to reassert control over his fractionated country, where everybody hates each other and hates him equally. The Saudis, who can’t stand Assad but won’t abide ISIS and are mortal enemies of Iran, are suppling ISIS like troops to fight Iran and are bullying Qatar, who are supporting with Iran the insurgency in Yemen to overthrow the Saudi supported government. It’s so bad that the Saudis are now secretly meeting with their stated enemy Israel, to plan against their shared mortal enemy Iran. The Americans, who support the Saudis and Israel, and are aligned against Russia, Syria, and Iran, are about to blow ISIS out of existence in Raqqa, who the Saudis support and the Turks see as a hedge against the Kurds. The Russians, who could care less if the whole region goes up in flames, thereby strengthening their hold on the eastern Mediterranean and energy dominance, don’t want the Americans sticking their nose back in the Middle East
And the Palestinians are mad that no one cares about the Palestinians any more.
Who will come out of this leaf pile is anyone’s guess.
Leaf Pile #4: The government of Venezuela has mandated that starving Venezuelans look to killing rabbits for sustenance as there are too many starving Venezuelans and too many rabbits, a convenient situation that could potentially solve both issues. Now, no one in President Maduro’s dictatorship or his Cuban handlers are eating rabbit. Their sustenance comes from maintaining the black market and the illegal drug trade that keeps the overlords on the filet and merlot diet. Most Venezuelans would prefer that diet, or any diet, but Venezuela is a socialist state, and that means everyone must starve so the few at the top can eat filet and merlot. despite Venezuela sitting on one of the world’s largest oil reserves, the socialist government of Venezuela/Cuba has managed to empty the treasury and re-orient the receipts into the hands of those who should benefit, the Cuban and Venezuelan overseers. The United States does not want to jump into this leaf pile, as it has recently opened relations with Cuba, the co-oppressors, and has a history of being over bearing in Central and South America that has weakened its moral influence. Besides, the United States has jumped into about 50 other leaf piles around the world. The Venezuelan people, who have been bullied to the edge of tolerance, may be determined to simply light this leaf pile to get rid of it once and for all. Nasty, sudden government overthrows, even of dictators, are after all, a Latin American tradition.
Leaf Pile #5: The United States is leaf blowing a whole new disorder of individual inequality and victimhood. The pile has now divided the sexes, two for eternity, into over 70 genders. Once united by the principle of our equality, we now reflect a unique bias to our race, gender, economic status, religion, and historical position. We are imbuing all our thoughts and actions as political. Sports, once the great escape from our differences, now must become the stage for our righteous indignation. Do we stand up or kneel down for our anthem , and what does it say about us? The President of ESPN, a sports network, has to remind his employees that after years of forcing in politics into every sporting event, they must be reminded that the sports network is supposed to report…sports. Differing opinions must be eliminated on campus if they threaten a person’s vulnerable value set, unless there are value sets felt impolitic. Laws are for some, but not for others. The government can decide which laws need enforcement and which don’t, leading to the need for new laws to firm the old, and necessarily to arbitrarily suppress freedom further. This leaf pile once seemed worthy of derision, but has become a generational piling on that looks to suffocate freedom and individual choice. Involved in so many international leaf piles, the largest and most combustible may be our own.
Heck, look for a good dog, and find your own leaf pile. We will have to get serious soon enough.