Only when I laugh
Another first this week, U.S. President Donald Trump being laughed at as he gave a speech to the United Nations (UN). Whether that was wise remains to be seen. Maybe it was just a spontaneous thing that some people just couldn’t help. In Monty Python terms annoying the most dangerous man in the world, Mr. Neutron, may not be a good idea.
I watched some of the testimony given to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Harrowing, I think is the word. That poor lady, Christine Blasey Ford came across to me as credible. Brett Kavanaugh, angry. Understandable but I don’t think he did himself any favours. Angry is not a trait I like in a judge. Some of this is political games and brinkmanship with the majority of the Supreme Court for years at stake. Would we be seeing the same if the boot was on the other foot? Sadly, I think so. Whether a Supreme Court should be partisan within a constitution is a debate for another day.
The Republicans are pushing for a vote on Kavanaugh to advance to the Senate, which they should win, but may not. A speedy appointment will, I think, mean that Republicans can kiss goodbye to a large chunk of the female vote at the mid-terms. Delay risks losing the houses in the midterms and the chance of a majority in the Supreme Court. I’ve always thought that an investigation is merited, now, The American Bar Association thinks the same. The FBI has a week to investigate. My gut tells me there is more to come on this. Other women are coming forward and have a tale to tell. I think the safest and correct course of action is have an investigation and see what come out.
It was going to be somewhat of a super Thursday with Trump meeting Rod Rosenstein, presumably to ask for his resignation or fire him, thus gaining control of the Mueller investigation. Perhaps this was a step too far and advice has stayed the President’s hand.
It’s disappointing and somewhat alarming for Canada to be castigated at the U.N. along with Iran and China. No mention of Russia though, which is odd or telling depending on your viewpoint. I think we must stand our ground on NAFTA even if it may mean pain in the short term. No administration lasts forever, right?
We all know but many seem to have frequently ignored or forgotten that China’s record is not great when it comes to human rights, currency, business and industrial activities. Money has talked as western companies flocked to set up in China helping push its economy to number two in the world. I’m not saying that Trump is wrong to push back, it should have been done years ago it’s the way he is doing it. Loss and gain of face is an important driver, ever more so in Asia. Messing with it is dangerous.
China cannot go tit for tat with the U.S. on tariffs, the trade numbers don’t stack up. The U.S imports far more from China than China imports from the U.S. So, China may retaliate in other ways. Sell U.S. debt at a loss? Cease cooperation with the U.S. on North Korea? We’ve already seen a U.S. warship refused to enter Hong Kong. I’ve read that U.S. companies are feeling the chill in China too. How about changing regulations or stepping up to freezing or seizing U.S. company assets in China? It’s been done by regimes before. How much damage would that do? It would be wise to tread carefully.