Wednesday Night #1803

Written by  //  September 21, 2016  //  Wednesday Nights  //  No comments

The Bush-Clinton saga ends with Bush, Sr. saying he’ll vote for Hillary. Reminds me of when the dwarves and elves united against the orcs.
George Takei (@GeorgeTakei)

It’s the last day of what has been for many an excruciatingly hot summer that has added fuel to the argument that climate change is real.  The question is, will nations make the necessary changes in policies and practices to effect any mitigation. Amidst pious words, practical actions may be counterproductive, as in China where Wind Battles Coal and while the country  is rapidly building wind turbines, the turbines are shut down by smoke coming from coal burning plants.

It has also been a long hot summer politically and geopolitically.

With 47 days to go to  Election Day, our first inclination is to avert our eyes – can Donald Trump’s campaign sink any lower? But his base continues to love him, no matter what the revelations about his finances, reversal of long-held positions (Obama was born in the United States), reliance on the very tax breaks and federal funding he decries to build his real estate empire, horrible pronouncements from inner team members (Donald Trump Jr. Faces Backlash After Comparing Syrian Refugees to Skittles That ‘Would Kill You) and outright lies (“Trump spreads lies the way terrorists plant bombs: one goes off, and when the first responders rush in, there’s a second, or even a third.” – Amy Davidson, The New Yorker).

David T. Jones writes in The Metropolitain “a slightly tongue-in-cheek (improbable, but not impossible) bit of speculation on selecting the next U.S. Secretary of State”  A Republican Secretary of State – Whoever Wins

The week-long ceasefire in Syria collapsed on Monday. The US blamed Russia for an attack on a UN aid convoy in Syria. Twenty people were killed and 18 trucks of food destined for thousands of stranded civilians were destroyed en route to a rebel-held area near Aleppo on Monday. The US said it held Russia responsible for the attack, saying it was Moscow’s job to rein in Syrian government forces. The world deplores and is helpless to put an end to the devastating conflict. Meanwhile the Obama administration faces the dilemma of whether to arm the Syrian Kurds who have proven to be the most effective fighters against ISIS.  That certainly won’t make Turkey happy.

The UN General Assembly is in session and the focus is on Refugees. On Monday, the General Assembly issued an unprecedented declaration on refugee crisis (the New York Declaration) – now, if they would only hold to it.
The usual parade of heads of state and celebrities (Emma Watson among others) has invaded New York. President Obama gave a sobering speech (full text)in which he reiterated his strong commitment to multilateralism and the world body. Justin Trudeau was there, front and center (in contrast to his predecessor), to  announce  ‘We’re Canadian and we’re here to help’.

Interesting branding decision to watch –Bayer AG’s proposed $66 billion purchase of Monsanto Co.; the company that invented Aspirin is poised to take on one of the world’s biggest corporate headaches. A potential cure: dropping the Monsanto name. Bayer will need to integrate a company known for making the herbicide Agent Orange for use in the Vietnam War and tangling with environmental groups over genetically-modified crops.

Have you been following the saga of Wells Fargo regarding the millions of fake accounts that the bank created over several years and 5,300 employees that were fired ? Senator Elizabeth Warren has and her epic takedown of CEO John Stumpf  at the Senate Banking Committee hearings is not to be missed.

Been wondering what could knock Donald Trump off the front pages, at least for a day or two? Wonder no longer – the split between Angelina and Brad should do it.  They seemed to be getting along fine until they got married …

On that (un)happy note, we hope you will join us this evening – we promise not to divorce ourselves from Wednesday Night.

 

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