We've got a shot fired literally over the bow of Japan by North Korea, and we have, as usual, a couple of different responses from the Trump administration. The president himself reminded us, in a tweet, that
The US has been talking to North Korea, and paying them extortion money, for 25 years. Talking is not the answer.Did he mean that we were done talking to Kim Jong Un now, in those back-channel conversations we've heard about, I wonder? Or, maybe he meant we're done talking at the UN and we're not going to push for additional sanctions, since they don't seem to be working anyway? Could he have meant we're done trying to talk China into doing something? Or, dare we even wonder, did he mean we were now looking only at military options, all others having been removed from the proverbial table?
Well, maybe we don't have to wonder about that after all, not if the cooler head of Defense Secretary James Mattis prevails. In yet another seeming contradiction (Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has had a few of his own recently), Mattis allowed as how
We're never out of diplomatic solutions. We always look for more. We're never complacent.In a speech in Springfield (Missouri, not any of those other Springfields we know and love), Trump talked taxes, and the need for tax reform, and #MAGA stuff. Here's an excerpt:
We cannot restore our wealth if we continue to put our businesses at such a tremendous disadvantage. We must reduce the tax rate on American businesses, so they keep jobs in America, create jobs in America and compete for workers right here in America -- the America we love. Thank you. Thank you very much.I understand that he was speaking at a private company, behind closed doors, and so he's guaranteed a pro-Trump audience - but I can't help wonder what he would have said if someone had asked what it would take for him to bring production of his branded products, and Ivanka ("My beautiful daughter, she's working very hard, I'm very proud of her") branded products, to America from China and all of the other countries where they're made? I know the question has been asked by the media, and ignored, but I really wonder what would happen in one of these closed-door sessions. Does he have any intention of bringing those jobs to America once we lower his taxes, or no?
We all know that the president has been tweeting! about how prepared he was! and his administration was for the epic! and historic! events taking place down there in the Gulf region. He even managed to get in a crowd size comment, in case you were wondering.
Thank you. Thank you everybody. Thank you. I just wanted to say, we love you, you are special. We're here to take care of you. It's going well. And I want to thank you for coming out. We're going to get you back and operating immediately. Thank you, everybody. What a crowd. What a turnout.I wonder, sometimes, if he will actually take credit for the magnitude of the storm, adding it to his list of superlative accomplishments?
And finally, as I write this, news is breaking that US District Judge Orlando Garcia issued a decision that will keep the Texas law barring sanctuary cities from taking effect while a suit against it proceeds. The law is one of the strongest of its kind; major cities in Texas sued to block it. I wonder, how long before we see the first tweet from the president? Do you think he'll be able to wait until tomorrow morning?