May 6, 2015

Wondering, on Wednesday (v29)

A whole lot of wondering about foreign affairs going on tonight.  Here goes:

You remember the big to-do when Israel prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu came to chat with his friends in Congress, without the President being involved, while he was in the middle of a big-time fight to win re-election?  And when he made a sharp turn to the right in the last couple days before the vote, declaring that if he stayed in power there would be no Palestinian state, and suddenly his party came out on top? Well, today he managed to pull together his coalition government by the slightest possible margin - one - just before the deadline. So small a margin, so late in the game, and with so many concessions to those on his right flank, many are wondering how long he'll be able to hold things together. And that has me wondering, if I were a Republican running for President, how interested would I be in seeking out Crying John Boehner's support?

"Oh to be in England," as Robert Browning wrote. No, I'm not talking about the news of the birth of Her Royal Highness Charlotte Elizabeth Diana of Cambridge, the newborn daughter of Wills and Kate. Rather, I'm thinking back and wondering, was it really at the end of March that England's Prime Minister David Cameron announced that the British elections would happen a mere 20-some-odd business days later, on May 7th? Can you even imagine the US having that short an election cycle, instead of the almost two-years-in-advance cycle we have?

And with so many folks already in the race on the Republican side -- 15 declared candidates, according to The Politics and Elections Portal - and another seven on the Dem side - we are almost guaranteed to have more people running for President than Britain has days in the campaign.  I have to wonder, are we really better off? (And yes that's a total of 22 declared candidates so far).

One last thing I'm wondering about that, I think, qualifies as a 'foreign' affair: this happened: Texas Governor Greg Abbott ordered the Texas National Guard to 'monitor' a joint training exercise of the Navy Seals and Green Berets, because, some folks thought, President Obama was going to take over Texas.

Now some of us might think that this is outlandish and out there, but it was so serious that even Walmart had to issue a statement stating that tunnels were not being built under their stores as part of the grand scheme, according to reports. I kid you not.

And I'm left wondering, does anyone doubt that Walmart would almost have to be involved for any takeover of this sort to be successful?