Home Daily Feature Friday News: “Mentally Deranged Dotard” vs. “Little Rocket Man”; “Oh, What a...

Friday News: “Mentally Deranged Dotard” vs. “Little Rocket Man”; “Oh, What a Trumpy Trade War!”; Dominion “wielded its deep influence to turn scorn into a big payday”

Ahhh...the "Virginia Way," gotta love it.


by Lowell

Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Friday, March 8.

  • Quizzical
  • Quizzical

    Hydroelectric dams were not built to power bitcoin mines.

  • Four-star General Wesley Clark:

    There is nothing wrong with meeting a potential adversary to defuse a crisis or transform a longstanding potential conflict. Ronald Reagan did it at Reykjavik, to the bewilderment of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Sometimes personal diplomacy can make a huge difference.

    Usually it doesn’t. Neville Chamberlain’s meeting with Hitler at Munich was such a case. Hitler wasn’t appeased.

    Personal diplomacy works when it can capture mutual interests and be followed by diligent staff work and full attention to details. Needless to say, this isn’t a business deal where CEO’s shake hands and leave it to armies of lawyers and accountants to sort out. And even those often turn out to be catastrophic.

    In the case of North Korea, our President’s months of name-calling and threats have badly worried many across Asia, not just Kim. He could hardly say, no. So, our President is potentially caught in a trap of his own making.

    What has to be done is carefully thinking through the outcome we seek and how to get there. This involves consultations with Allies, detailed staff work based on sound intelligence, a strategy for the negotiations, and a careful choreography.

    With President Trump, the choreography is probably the least concern; where to meet, who greets whom, and how, and what to say afterwards. For a reality TV star this is familiar ground.

    But the consultations, coordination, strategizing, teamwork, and all the follow-through are an order of magnitude more complex than anything this Administration has attempted. What do we ask for? What do we offer? Past negotiations with North Korea have been bruising and usually fruitless. Do we seek an immediate freeze and eventual disarmament? Do we pay for it by economic aid and assistance? Does he have to reign in his rogue behavior? Does he answer for the crimes of a brutal regime? Do we end up reducing our exercises or presence in the South? What do South Korea and Japan need? Are we prepared for his resistance to tough demands? These and countless other questions need to be addressed privately, and some with Allies, to assure that a photo-op meeting doesn’t lead to a wasted opportunity, escalated tensions, broken alliances, or conflict. For everyone’s sake, we hope our President and his Administration are up to the task.

  • Virginia State Senate votes 40-0 for special session


  • From Sen. Mark Warner’s office:


    ~ On President Trump’s agreement to engage in direct nuclear talks with North Korea ~

    WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA), Vice Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, issued the following statement after President Trump accepted an invitation to meet with North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-un:

    “Diplomacy is the right path forward to deal with North Korea. At the same time, due to Pyongyang’s history of obfuscation and international defiance, the United States must proceed with caution. I am deeply concerned that the White House has not laid the necessary diplomatic groundwork and coordination for direct talks with North Korea. Even President Trump’s own Secretary of State appeared to be taken aback by this announcement. President Trump’s record of cozying up to authoritarian governments, his consistent failure to appoint, empower or value the expertise of professional diplomats, and his overall lack of focus on critical details also give me pause. The Administration must go into any meeting with a plan to ensure that negotiations with Kim Jong-un produce real results, not a photo op that lends legitimacy to North Korea’s murderous regime.”