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Blue

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Blue last won the day on April 25

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  1. Yeah, it does seem like a lot of grandstanding. I would have assumed just about any Congressman of note would receive at least a handful of similar letters every year. Lots of crazies out there, after all. Sure enough, from the article: 9000 potential threats, spread over 535 Congressmen and Senators. I assume Kinzinger probably has a selection of letters he could have chosen from when he published this one.
  2. Two things can be true at the same time. Ashley Babbitt shouldn't have been where she was, but that doesn't completely exonerate the Capitol Police, or anyone else who was involved. I'd like to see a complete, non-partisan review of Jan 6th, but it seems that's never going to happen, given the current political climate.
  3. I imagine the FAA Administrator is a tough job to staff. The population of people with aviation experience at an executive level (whether public or private) is pretty small. To add, the person you nominate has to want the job. With commercial aviation reeling from Covid, Boeing's shenanigans with the MAX and 787, etc, I'd think some qualified people would respond "thanks but no thanks." However, the reality is that, in the hierarchy of qualifications for these politically-appointed jobs, experience is pretty far down the list. It's Identity Politics above all, which means the number one criteria Democrats are looking for is that the nominee either be a woman or a "person of color." When you constrain the candidate pool that much, it's no surprise that you end up with candidates who have really thin qualifications.
  4. Careful what you ask for. From the Seattle Times:
  5. I saw the first Presidential Debate (Sept 29th, 2020) as a prime example of this. Trump could have "parked his ego in the corner" and just let Biden run his mouth. Biden has historically been a poor performer at debates, normally providing a steady stream of verbal gaffes. Instead, Trump came in with both guns blazing, all all Biden had to do was sit back and watch the night implode. Still shake my head at that whole debate.
  6. Some recent rumblings about Biden being too old to run in 2024. The cynic in me thinks that these stories aren't simply plain old journalism, rather they've been timed appropriately to "test the waters" and gauge the public's reaction. From the NYT last week: Should Biden Run in 2024? Democratic Whispers of ‘No’ Start to Rise. In interviews, dozens of frustrated Democratic officials, members of Congress and voters expressed doubts about the president’s ability to rescue his reeling party and take the fight to Republicans. Related article in The Atlantic from yesterday: “It’s not the 82 that’s the problem. It’s the 86,” one swing voter said in a recent focus group, referring to the hypothetical age Biden would be at the end of that (very) hypothetical second term. The Chicago Tribune is going so far as to speculate that IL Governor JB Pritzker's recent trip to New Hampshire is signaling a "soft launch" of his presidential campaign. The guy has a net worth close to $4 billion, so would be interesting to see the impact of his money on the race.
  7. This thread was producing a lot of good discussion, and then the Climate Change grenade got thrown into the room, sending us into a whole page of nonsense back and forth. Don't feed the troll.
  8. It's really stunning the amount of infrastructure that has been dismantled or otherwise hobbled in the pursuit of so-called "green" agendas.
  9. The Air Force Intern program always seemed like a good deal if you were fresh out of school and considering a career in civilian service. Knew a couple of engineers who did it. The starting pay was low, but you were escalated pretty quick, and you had a relatively defined career path. That said, the whole program was designed around engineering, cyber, intel, etc. The fact that they're trying to shoehorn T-6 IPs into the AF Intern program is suspect. If they really wanted civilian T-6 IPs, there is a path to creating and staffing GS billets. If you don't have the time and/or horsepower to create civilian billets, the normal path is to hire contractors. Smells like someone got a visit from the Good Idea Fairy, and came up with the idea of civilian T-6 IPs. Getting GS billets or contractors was to tough a mountain to climb, but they found that the AF Intern program could be used as a workaround. Also, the "pamphlet" thing in the first post, the upper right hand corner reads "Positions available in the follow field." Shouldn't that be "following?" The whole thing just seemed half-assed. If they actually did hire folks, watch them all be quietly dropped once the CSAF or someone moved on (like enlisted UAV pilots).
  10. Yeah, from the outside looking in, it seems like this is just a play to reduce the number of AF pilots needed to man AF planes. Freeing up pilots to go work staff. Since, if you're gonna send someone through the above training, it would seem to make sense to tack on a couple months (or whatever it is) at OTS and make these civilians into Air Force officers.
  11. The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) was founded in 2008. Over the past 14 years, did their work drive any meaningful change? Their reports were regularly quoted in the press. It seems like they did good work. But, the most recent reports sound as depressing as their early reports. Since 2008, the reports always seemed to take on an almost absurdist tone, and never seemed to show that we actually learned anything.
  12. Have some loose ties to the Northern NJ area. Seen it more than once: Boomers who started out in the 80s in NYC. Rode the stock market up, and moved out to the open spaces of Northern NJ when they started families. Built big, beautiful houses. Now, 40 years later, those boomers are retiring. The areas they moved into in the 80s have gone from open fields and quaint little towns to the land of endless big houses and continuous strip malls. Some of those boomers want to sell their houses and cash-in/downsize, but they're finding "Dang millennials just don't want these big houses." While it's probably more accurate to say "Those dang millennials can't afford to buy your house, much less pay the taxes and upkeep required." I think we're seeing the end of the most recent "gilded age" in the US. Not just an inevitable ebb in the ebb and flow of the economy, but a real, sustained period of excessive pain for everyone but those at the top.
  13. I find it hard to believe that anyone with any level of intelligence would think the US could put the genies of abortion or birth control back in the bottle. High net worth or not. I always assumed the "solution" was being carried out in our existing immigration "policies." As in, regardless of what we say, the real policy is that the US will do next to nothing to stop illegal immigration, because the people with money and power don't want to take their hit to the balance sheet.
  14. In the context of linked article I discussed, the author makes an entirely different point. It's not left vs right. Both "sides" are pushing for larger and larger intervention in Ukraine, and if you buy into the typical "my political party vs your political party" argument, then you're a fool. Our current efforts in Ukraine are clearly another proxy war. Which, hell, I'm not even against it. I wish Putin wouldn't have invaded, but now that he has, I see the arguments for giving various forms of support to Zelensky (military, financial, logistical, humanitarian, etc) Where does it end though? If you're keeping score, we have a bad track record at proxy wars: Korea - 1950-1953. We're still there. Vietnam: 15 years of pouring blood and treasure into a country, then left. Afghanistan: We supported the mujahedeen against the Soviets - where the fuck did that get us? An invite back to the country for 20 years of pain and a Global War on Terror. Various involvement in Central and South American proxy wars during the 80s: Not too bad for the average American. Left those poor countries in shambles, though. Would love to see us support Zelensky in his push to get the Russians out of Ukraine. I'd cheer along with him as the last Russian troop walks back across the border, without his weapon. I'd hope Biden and his team have a nice celebration in the Situation Room when that happens. But then what? My fear is we end up doing the same thing in Ukraine that we've done everywhere else. We stay, and continue to pour a bunch of our national treasure into a rat hole. Eventually we start spilling American blood there, too.
  15. I don't know @Prozac. Not sure why I'd be asking a washed up actress, congressman, or TV personality for any kind of medical advice. But that's besides the point. Back in the Before Times, if the CDC made a recommendation, I could evaluate it on my own. I could consult my doctor, my friends, my clergyman, my drinking buddies, or the monster that lives under my bed. I could make my own decision on what to do. I could decide to do what the CDC recommends. I could decide to do the opposite. I could exercise my God-given American right to sit on my ass, and take absolutely no action at all. Regardless of what I decided, I wouldn't face a loss of my job, being barred from local businesses, or anything of the sort. But, I suppose those times are long past.
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