“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Friday, May 05, 2017

Why Does North Korea Want Nuclear Weapons? For Good Reason:

Another Point of View:

Why Do North Koreans Hate Us? One Reason — They Remember the Korean War.

“WHY DO they hate us?”

It’s a question that has bewildered Americans again and again in the wake of 9/11, in reference to the Arab and Muslim worlds. These days, however, it’s a question increasingly asked about the reclusive North Koreans.

Let’s be clear: there is no doubt that the citizens of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) both fear and loathe the United States. Paranoia, resentment and a crude anti-Americanism have been nurtured inside the Hermit Kingdom for decades. Children are taught to hate Americans in school while adults mark a “Struggle Against U.S. Imperialism Month” every year (it’s in June, in case you were wondering).

North Korean officials make wild threats against the United States while the regime, led by the brutal and sadistic Kim Jong-un, pumps out fake news in the form of self-serving propaganda, on an industrial scale. In the DPRK, anti-American hatred is a commodity never in short supply.

“The hate, though,” as long-time North Korea watcher Blaine Harden observed in the Washington Post, “ is not all manufactured.” Some of it, he wrote, “is rooted in a fact-based narrative, one that North Korea obsessively remembers and the United States blithely forgets.”

Forgets as in the “forgotten war.” Yes, the Korean War. Remember that? The one wedged between World War II and the Vietnam War? The first “hot” war of the Cold War, which took place between 1950 and 1953, and which has since been conveniently airbrushed from most discussions and debates about the “crazy” and “insane” regime in Pyongyang? Forgotten despite the fact that this particular war isn’t even over — it was halted by an armistice agreement, not a peace treaty — and despite the fact that the conflict saw the United States engage in numerous war crimes which, perhaps unsurprisingly, continue to shape the way North Koreans view the United States, even if the residents of the United States remain blissfully ignorant of their country’s belligerent past.

For the record, it was the North Koreans, and not the Americans or their South Korean allies, who started the war in June 1950, when they crossed the 38th Parallel and invaded the south. Nevertheless, “What hardly any Americans know or remember,” University of Chicago historian Bruce Cumings writes in his book “The Korean War: A History,” “is that we carpet-bombed the north for three years with next to no concern for civilian casualties.”

How many Americans, for example, are aware of the fact that U.S. planes dropped on the Korean peninsula more bombs — 635,000 tons — and napalm — 32,557 tons — than during the entire Pacific campaign against the Japanese during World War II?

How many Americans know that “over a period of three years or so,” to quote Air Force General Curtis LeMay, head of the Strategic Air Command during the Korean War, “we killed off … 20 percent of the population”?

Twenty. Percent. For a point of comparison, the Nazis exterminated 20 percent of Poland’s pre-World War II population. According to LeMay, “We went over there and fought the war and eventually burned down every town in North Korea.”

Every. Town. More than three million civilians are believed to have been killed in the fighting, the vast majority of them in the north.
circa 1950: An elderly woman and her grandchild wander among the debris of their wrecked home in the aftermath of an air raid by U.S. planes over Pyongyang, the Communist capital of North Korea. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
An elderly woman and her grandchild wander among the debris of their wrecked home in the aftermath of an air raid by U.S. planes over Pyongyang, the Communist capital of North Korea, circa 1950.
Photo: Keystone/Getty Images

How many Americans are familiar with the statements of Secretary of State Dean Rusk or Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas? Rusk, who was a State Department official in charge of Far Eastern affairs during the Korean War, would later admit that the United States bombed “every brick that was standing on top of another, everything that moved.” American pilots, he noted, “were just bombing the heck out of North Korea.”

Douglas visited Korea in the summer of 1952 and was stunned by the “misery, disease, pain and suffering, starvation” that had been “compounded” by air strikes. U.S. warplanes, having run out of military targets, had bombed farms, dams, factories and hospitals. “I had seen the war-battered cities of Europe,” the Supreme Court justice confessed, “but I had not seen devastation until I had seen Korea.”

How many Americans have ever come across General Douglas MacArthur’s unhinged plan to win the war against North Korea in just 10 days? MacArthur, who led the United Nations Command during the conflict, wanted to drop “between 30 and 50 atomic bombs … strung across the neck of Manchuria” that would have “spread behind us … a belt of radioactive cobalt.”

How many Americans have heard of the No Gun Ri massacre, in July 1950, in which hundreds of Koreans were killed by U.S. warplanes and members of the 7th U.S. Cavalry regiment as they huddled under a bridge? Details of the massacre emerged in 1999, when the Associated Press interviewed dozens of retired U.S. military personnel. “The hell with all those people,” one American veteran recalled his captain as saying. “Let’s get rid of all of them.”

How many Americans are taught in school about the Bodo League massacre of tens of thousands of suspected communists on the orders of the U.S.-backed South Korean strongman, President Syngman Rhee, in the summer of 1950? 
Eyewitness accounts suggest “jeeploads” of U.S. military officers were present and “supervised the butchery.”

Millions of ordinary Americans may suffer from a toxic combination of ignorance and amnesia, but the victims of U.S. coups, invasions and bombing campaigns across the globe tend not to. Ask the Iraqis or the Iranians, ask the Cubans or the Chileans. And, yes, ask the North Koreans.

For the residents of the DPRK, writes Columbia University historian Charles Armstrong in his book “Tyranny of the Weak: North Korea and the World, 1950–1992,” “the American air war left a deep and lasting impression” and “more than any other single factor, gave North Koreans a collective sense of anxiety and fear of outside threats, that would continue long after the war’s end.”

Don’t get me wrong: I’m not pretending that Kim’s violent and totalitarian regime would be any less violent or totalitarian today had the U.S. not carpet-bombed North Korea almost 70 years ago. Nor am I expecting Donald Trump, of all presidents, to offer a formal apology to Pyongyang on behalf of the U.S. government for the U.S. war crimes of 1950 through 1953.

But the fact is that inside North Korea, according to leading Korea scholar Kathryn Weathersby, “it is still the 1950s … and the conflict with South Korea and the United States is still going on. People in the North feel backed into a corner and threatened.”

If another Korean war, a potentially nuclear war, is to be avoided and if, as the Czech-born novelist Milan Kundera famously wrote, “the struggle of man against power is the struggle of memory against forgetting,” then ordinary Americans can no longer afford to forget the death, destruction and debilitating legacy of the original Korean War.

Top photo: U.S. troops bring in North Korean prisoners of war, Oct. 7, 1950.


  1. A nuclear armed bar is a polite bar.

  2. Korea is China, and Japan's problem. Japan can get China to fix it mach schnell by announcing their intention to build a nuclear deterrent to counter Nork.

    North Korea is no threat to the US, unless we make it one.

  3. In 1968, Kim Il Sung hijacked the U.S. intelligence ship Pueblo and held its crew hostage. America, tied down in Vietnam, did nothing. In 1976, North Koreans ax-murdered two U.S. officers in the DMZ. In 1983, Pyongyang tried to assassinate South Korea’s president in Burma and blew up three members of his cabinet. In 1987, North Koreans blew up a South Korean airliner.

    These unpunished atrocities all occurred during the rule of Kim Il Sung.

    Under Kim Jong Il, Pyongyang torpedoed a South Korean patrol boat, killing 47, and shelled a South Korean island, killing four. Neither Washington nor Seoul retaliated.

    It was not worth retaliating then. It is not worth a preemptive strike now.

    1. The Norks didn't have the capacity to nuke the USA in those times.


    2. The NorKs DO NOT have that capacity in these times, either, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson.

  4. So, sure seems like Mehdi is saying Quirk is full of it once again.

    Quirk was saying it was cause Kim wanted to protect his mistresses, cigars, and cognac.

    That would be his understanding of things !

    Pure projection.

    For the record, I think Mehdi is at least 1/2 full of it too.

    Think of the old East Germany as being in the same situation as N. Korea and you'll see what I mean....

    1. The view that Kim Fatty is a major psychotic works pretty well....


    2. Golly, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson, that means that you must think Donald Trump, President of the United States, is absolutely wrong in his determination that 'Maximum Leader' Kim is a "Pretty Smart Cookie"?

      Are you telling US that you think that the US President has been played, again?

  5. Progress? Powers agree on Syria no-fly zone after chemical-weapons attacks

    Looks like the US response to Bashar al-Assad’s chemical weapons attack got everyone’s attention. Russia, Turkey, and Iran agreed to establish five “de-escalation zones” that will bar any military flights over parts of western Syria, including those of Assad’s forces. The no-fly zone arrangement goes into effect at midnight, and includes Idlib, where the chemical weapons attack took place:...

  6. If the facts are correct and the claim of General Curtis Lemay is correct, we killed 20% of the Korean population, 66 years ago.

    That would calculate on a % basis, the entire population of Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Illinois, Minnesota, New Jersey, South Carolina and Rhode Island.

    Given that, who could blame then for not wanting what the US, France, UK, Russia, China, India, Israel and Pakistan all have and claim they need for the security of their people?

    A nuclear deterrent.

  7. The latest in a series of Pentagon proposals on changing US policy in its assorted wars, a series of options are expected to be delivered to President Trump next week on Afghanistan. The options being presented, according to the Pentagon, are meant to “break the stalemate” in Afghanistan.

    By “stalemate,” what the Pentagon really means is mounting losses, which have left the Taliban with more territory now than at any other point in the 16-year US occupation.

    1. .

      They just don't get it.

      The Afghan government is the most corrupt in the world. We drove both the Taliban and al Qaeda out in 2001. Now, they are back. If we drive them out again, they'll be back again. Now, we have ISIS there.

      If nothing else, the Taliban at least got rid of the opium trade for a year or two before the US invaded. Now, the trade back and is bigger than ever.

      We helped bring about al Qaeda in the 80's to battle the Russian occupation. Now, there is talk Russia is starting to do the same with the Taliban in order to fight the US occupation.

      The US response? Send in more troops.

      Gee, who'da thunk?


  8. .

    Quirk was saying it was cause Kim wanted to protect his mistresses, cigars, and cognac.

    Damn, Bob, you are the stupidest ass I know.

    Those are things he enjoys. The reason he wants nukes and ICBMs is that they are his best bet for protecting his regime and more importantly himself from attack from the West. He wants them to assure he is alive first and secondarily as a result of being alive to be able to enjoy the things I mentioned.

    Kim is 33. Obviously, everyone in NK knows about the Korean war but Kim wasn't even born when it was going on. But he has more recent evidence of what happens when countries give up their nukes or have them taken away, Iraq, Syria, and the most telling example, Libya where Qaddafi gave up his nuke program based on US promises and a few years later ended up on the hood of a jeep sodomized with a stick before being killed.

    That's the picture that guarantees Kim will never give up his nukes. It's the same picture that guarantees Assad will never voluntarily step down. They know what to expect if they do.



    1. You speak of the 'enemies' of the US, Q.

      Remember how the US treats its 'friends', like the Shah of Iran or President Diem of Vietnam.

      Or President Noriega of Panama ... Allies of the US one and all, before they weren't.

    2. .

      With friends like us...

      You've got to ask which countries in the world believe what they hear from the US.


  9. I had a friend also named Bob. He died last year. I miss him. Can't remember when I first met him. A little older than I, I spent a lot of time on their farm as a kid, his father had farmed for my grandfather. One of his grandfathers was a missionary to the Nez Perce. They still spoke Nez Perce, many of them, in those days. Often there would be four or five in the living room, males, silent as Cigar Store Indians, waiting for the food to be cooked for them.

    This Bob went to Korea. What's your background, he was asked. Farming. They put him in a small group guarding some grain bins. They didn't like standing out in the weather, so they put a really mean Doberman in the bin.

    At the end there were five dead Koreans in there, mauled to death for seeking food.

    Bob did catch one, and shooed him away.

    He was glad to get back home.


    I see rat'sass is here, to team up with Quirk, perhaps.


    1. The Doberman's name was Himmler.

      That's what they named the Doberman.



    2. Quirk
      Fri May 05, 07:47:00 PM EDT


      Damn, Bob, you are the stupidest ass I know.


  10. At least four soldiers and six suspected oil thieves died in a battle in the central Mexican state of Puebla, authorities said on Thursday, as the army launched a major operation against organized criminals who siphon fuel from pipelines.

    Some 600 soldiers were involved in the initial operation, the state government said, with another 400 backed by helicopters and truck-mounted weapons joining them.

    The troops were called in to investigate a report of an oil pipeline theft at around 8:15 p.m. local time (0115 GMT) on Wednesday, near the village of Palmarito, when they were shot at by a group using women and children as human shields, the army said in a statement.


  11. Material from Reuters, Colectivo Pericue, BCS Noticias

    A shootout near the Mexican beach resort of Los Cabos early on Monday, May 1 between suspected gang members and navy forces has left eight dead, including one soldier.

    The incident took place before dawn on the outskirts of San Jose del Cabo, about 20 miles (30 km) northeast of the area's main tourist hub of Cabo San Lucas. Security forces later recovered unspecified drugs, vehicles, communications equipment, military-issued weapons and uniforms, the navy said in a statement.

    The Western State of Baja California Sur, popular with international tourists and ex-pats, has seen growing gangland violence over the last several months.


  12. The House Republican health care bill's massive cuts to Medicaid, often skimmed over in the last-minute drama over pre-existing conditions, are fast emerging as a critical source of opposition in the Senate.


    Gee, who'da thunk?


    1. President Donald Trump said in his speech announcing his 2016 campaign that he would not cut Medicaid and bragged on Twitter that he was the first candidate to do so.

      He didn't keep that promise: The bill's Medicaid cuts, which the Congressional Budget Office estimates at $839 billion over 10 years, are arguably its most sweeping change.

      They're also critical to financing the bill's tax cuts for high-income Americans and medical industries, which require the savings to offset the loss in revenue.


  13. Our "Draft Dodger" mentioned this earlier, claiming 'progress' was being made thanks to US actions.

    The reality, Mr Trump and the US are being played, again ...

    Critically, the plan allows for the guarantors to continue fighting not just the Islamic State but also al-Qaeda, which is allied with some rebel groups in the proposed safe zones.
    Previous cease-fires failed for this reason, as Syrian and Russian jets continued to bomb civilians in rebel-held areas.

    Are these no-fly zones?

    It appears so, but there may be enormous loopholes. The ban does not apply to attacks on rebel groups who have not signed on to the agreement, and it specifically exempts attacks on al-Qaeda and Islamic State forces.

    The Israeli and John McCain backed al-Qeada operatives in Syria will still be viable targets.
    The US/NeoCon position gains nothing, but allowing Syria, Iran and Russia to take the political initiative, making the US/Israeli backed al-Qeada operatives legitimate terrorists.

    Putin and the Imams are playing hardball, while the US still has their AAA farm team on the field.


    1. Others, including a U.S.-based faction, said they would never accept Iran as a guarantor of any agreement.


      The memorandum appears to allow the government of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to continue its recent military offensives against Kurdish fighters in northern Syria whom it sees as an arm of Turkey’s Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, which Turkey has classified as a terrorist group.

  14. Quirkie you told me and Me-Me that Kim wanted his nukies so he could keep his cigars, whores and cognac.

    I remember cause you said you'd do it too to keep me and Me-Me, and your cigars and Jimmie Beam.

    It made me feel good.

    1. That's what you said Quirkie. You said if he lost his nukies he'd lose the things he loves most. You said
      if that happened he would no long be able to enjoy his whores and cognac and cigars.

  15. Our self described military genius Dead Beat Dad says S. Korea would easily win a war with N. Korea.

    But no one in this Bar has enough real knowledge to even make a guess at an outcome.

    Our self confessed criminal sure showed his stuff in predicting, and betting too, that ISIS would be eradicated from Iraq over a year ago.

    Mosul hasn't even been cleaned out yet and even that would not be the end of it.

    The track record of this self described leader of a hit squad in Central America does not create confidence.

    Ho ho ho - and that is an understatement.

    We don't know how well the N. Koreans would fight.

    We don't know enough about their artillery, or how easily or hard it might be to take out.

    We certainly have no idea what the Chinese response would be if S. Korean troops were suddenly heading north.

    And many other issues....

    This all leaving the nuclear issue aside....

    As usual, our crapper rat is full of crap.

  16. Back to Sanctimonious Comeynius the Nauseous

    Bolton: Comey ‘Should Have Been Fired’; He Should Bring Clinton Indictment or Be Silent
    By Pamela Geller - on May 5, 2017

    “I thought he should have been fired on January 20th. I thought his press conference in July where he talked about the Clinton email case was inappropriate, contrary to Department of Justice guidelines. He shouldn’t have done that.” Former UN Ambassador John Bolton

    President Trump ought to bring Ambassador Bolton on board his administration — Bannon could use a battle-ready warrior like him. I suspect that eventually Trump will. He needs him.

    Listen to the John Bolton interview here.


    Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton, spoke with Breitbart News Daily SiriusXM host Alex Marlow on Thursday.


    Said Bolton on Comey, “I thought he should have been fired on January 20th. I thought his press conference in July where he talked about the Clinton email case was inappropriate, contrary to Department of Justice guidelines. He shouldn’t have done that.”

    “He shouldn’t have sent the letter in October,” Bolton continued. “The rule for prosecutors and investigators, alike, should be you either bring an indictment against somebody, or you remain silent publicly. I think this whole thing is about the greater glory of Jim Comey.”

    He also said he thinks Comey is hurting the FBI and the administration should take a close look at the Inspector General’s report on the matter when it’s finished.

    The question arose among us as to who could fire Comey.

    Here is, from John Bolton, the answer:

    “I thought he should have been fired on January 20th."

    John Bolton

    This indicates the President can fire the FBI Director at will.

    Since John Bolton is so often correct, I accept he is correct here as well.

    1. "I think this whole thing is about the greater glory of Jim Comey.”

      John Bolton

      Bolton seems to agree with Deuce's excellent description:

      Sanctimonious Comeynius the Nauseous


    2. The moslems always, sooner or later, attack their neighbors, wherever they may be - even in far away Brazil -

      Brazil: 8 Muslims jailed for Islamic State Olympic jihad massacre plot

      MAY 5, 2017 10:20 AM BY ROBERT SPENCER

      “Josegrei da Silva, who presides in the ParanĂ¡ state, sentenced the ringleader of the group, identified as Leonid El Kadre de Melo, to 15 years in prison, while the other men were jailed five to six years.”

      It seems that the ringleader was a convert to Islam, once again driven to treason and mass murder by the teachings of his new religion. Once again, authorities remain uninterested in this phenomenon.

      “8 Brazilian Islamic State supporters jailed for Olympic plot,” by Andrew V. Pestano, UPI, May 5, 2017 (thanks to Lookmann):

      May 5 (UPI) — Brazilian federal judge Marcos Josegrei da Silva has imprisoned eight Islamic State supporters who planned to attack the 2016 Rio Olympics.

      Josegrei da Silva, who presides in the ParanĂ¡ state, sentenced the ringleader of the group, identified as Leonid El Kadre de Melo, to 15 years in prison, while the other men were jailed five to six years.

      The men, Brazilian nationals who said they would appeal, were using the Internet, particularly social media platforms Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, to attempt to connect with Islamic State members in order to coordinate attacks against gay people, Shiite Muslims, Jews and foreigners during the Olympics, Josegrei da Silva said.

      The FBI helped Brazilian authorities in the investigation. The men were tried and convicted under a new anti-terrorism law in Brazil for planning to carry out a chemical attack during the Olympics, Jornal O Globo reported.

      “The condemned exalted and celebrated terrorist acts already carried out worldwide, including the posting of videos and photos of public executions of people by the Islamic State, arrived at guidelines on how to take the oath to the leader of the group, and reached discussions on possible targets for attacks they could carry out in Brazil with guidance on the manufacture of homemade bombs, the use of [melee weapons] and the acquisition of firearms,” Josegrei da Silva wrote in the decision….

    3. "First we'll show the Poles then everybody else"

      Quote from newly elected moslem councilman to the City Council in Hamtramck, Michigan.

  17. Might as well throw this in -

    Venezuela Starving...

    Most Citizens Lost an Average of 19 Pounds...

    Chavez statue destroyed....DRUDGE

    Tearing down a Chavez statue is a new twist.

    Hasn't happened before, unless I missed it.

  18. For Quirk

    May 6, 2017
    Trump’s Good cop/bad cop Approach to Saudi Arabia
    By Robert Caskey

    For Everyone

    May 6, 2017
    War with North Korea: the Toll
    By J. Robert Smith

    No one really has any idea what would happen during a war in Korea.

    1. Also:

      What Experts Fear About North Korea That the Public Doesn’t Know
      Intel from former director at the White House National Security Council.

      Politics R.P. Eddy, CEO of Ergo
      10 hours ago

      R.P. Eddy is a former Director of the White House National Security Council and senior U.S. diplomat. He is the CEO of Ergo.

      President Trump recently warned that a “major, major conflict” with North Korea is possible. He may be right. Given the escalation of rhetoric from North Korean leader Kim Jong Un—with the country’s official newspaper warning Tuesday that the U.S. could face a “preemptive nuclear strike” on its mainland—there is no greater potential global flashpoint. Despite the recent spike in news coverage, the mainstream media as well as some key decision makers seem to be missing seven critical facts.

      The Bad News:

      1. Up to 15,000 North Korean artillery pieces are aimed at Seoul. North Korea has been digging in and preparing for this stand-off since the 1960’s, stacking and hiding missiles and artillery in the hills and mountains of its border with South Korea. Many of these weapons will carry chemical weapons (more below). The artillery’s lethality is often debated, but there is a persistent belief these weapons could turn nearby Seoul, home to approximately 25 million, into a “sea of fire.”

      2. North Korea may want something the U.S. can’t give. Here is the critical question: Are the Kims irrational expansionists who will only accept complete control of the entire Korean peninsula, or cornered hermits just hoping to survive? Neither Trump nor Chinese President Xi—nor even the North Korean people—really know the answer. This makes us nervous: The previous two leaders of North Korea negotiated international disarmament frameworks which guaranteed Pyongyang’s security, yet it was they who broke each one.

      3. Kim Jong Un killed his brother with the nastiest chemical weapon ever made, so you would know he can. There’s an ongoing debate among experts about whether North Korea has successfully “miniaturized” a nuclear weapon to fit it on a long-range missile. That’s an unknown, but what here’s what we do know: The country has deadly chemical weapons which could be launched at South Korea or Japan. They demonstrated this capability earlier this year, when North Korean operatives used a nerve agent called VX to murder Kim Jong-nam, the half-brother of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un.

    2. North Korea
      North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un (c.) has struck a tough rhetoric. (AFP PHOTO/KCNA VIA KNS)
      4. There’s no clean military solution: While the United States has reportedly been considering a military strike on either North Korean nuclear facilities or the leadership elite, such an attack is unlikely to succeed and could trigger a barrage from the Seoul-directed artillery.

      5. One horrible, but potentially realistic, U.S. response could be condemned as criminal if ordered by Trump: Last month, former Secretary of Defense Ash Carter said about an attack on North Korea, “We’ve always had all options on the table… I wouldn’t take any off.” Were North Korea to commence a massive artillery barrage on Seoul, and especially if they used chemical or biological weapons, one potential U.S. response could be nuclear retaliation against Pyongyang and/or their artillery at the border. (Perhaps dialing down the “variable yield” of our B-61 nuclear bombs to reduce radioactive fallout and civilian casualties). As outlandish as this response may seem right now, some U.S. war planners do not think so; it could be considered “proportional” and therefore within the laws of armed conflict. If a nuclear bombing were ordered under Obama–who was widely perceived as thoughtful and hesitant to use force—the world may have been largely willing to listen to his logic. Unfortunately, because much of the international community views President Trump as reactive, even unstable, any such U.S.-initiated action would likely be met by ferocious global condemnation. This perception of our President may be a tactical consideration for our war planners led by the very talented head of Pacific Command, Adm. Harry Harris.

      6. Even a small nuclear exchange could trigger a global nuclear winter: Those who grew up in the 80’s likely remember the highly publicized fear of worldwide dramatic cooling that would follow a US-Soviet nuclear war. Science now tells us that even a small exchange between countries such as India and Pakistan or in North Korea, could cause a decade-long, “catastrophic” nuclear winter.

      7. There will likely be a ripple effect that goes all the way to your cellphone: South Korea is home to a huge concentration of manufacturing facilities for the components of cell phones, batteries, and small screens. Samsung and other global tech titans have made the country a locus of their electronics sourcing and fabrication. A destabilization of the Korean peninsula would have a devastating impact on the supply of key technologies that power the global electronics market, causing prices to spike.

      The Good News:

      When it comes to Pyongyang, there really isn’t any. Is there such a thing as a totally intractable national security challenge?

      Ergo delivers frontline intelligence on critical issues across the globe.

    3. Advice on buying gold and silver here:

    4. PATCH

      One-eyed Patch racing in Kentucky Derby
      Race has purse of $2.4 million

      (CNN)When three-year-old thoroughbred Patch takes to the starting gate at this year's Kentucky Derby Saturday, many people -- be it in the stands or watching on TV -- probably won't be aware that this is a very special horse.

      At the left-hand side of Patch's head is a dark hole -- about the size of a golf ball -- where his eye used to be.

      As a two-year-old, Patch developed an ulcer in his left eye that, despite the best possible medical care, didn't respond to treatment.

      Eventually, in June 2016, the colt had his eye removed after trainer Todd Pletcher decided nothing more could be done to save it.

      Trevor Breen rode one-eyed showjumper Adventure De Kannan to victory in the 2014 Hickstead Derby and he says the adaption for a horse after losing an eye is more of a mental than a physical one.

      "I think the heart, mind and attitude of the horse are big factors in the recovery," Breen told CNN. "The first thing is the obvious one really, they've just got to come to terms with it.
      Glamour and tradition at the Kentucky Derby

      Glamour and tradition at the Kentucky Derby 07:11 VIDEO

      "What they used to be able to see, they now can't. Horses are very good at adapting and I think they sometimes deserve a lot more credit than we give them.

      "The key to it all is the mind of the horse. If they have a really good attitude and that they want to do the job that you want them to do, then they'll find a way to do it."

      Patch, who was coincidentally given his name before losing an eye, is ranked as an outside -- but not impossible -- 30-1 shot along with three other horses.

      Two other runners, Fast and Accurate and Sonneteer are given odds of 50-1.

    5. Patch, the favorite of pirates everywhere, might have trouble on this muddy track.

      A little mud in the eye, he'll be running blind.

      This is when the jock's skill really comes in to play.

    6. What if the name caused the ulcer?

    By Lauren Collins 12:32 P.M.

    Is Macron a fag ?

    Probably, and maybe much more.

  20. Nothing but b00bie shit smeared all over this place.

  21. You don't like the Kentucky Derby, SMIRK ?

    Well, you probably wouldn't.

    Your loss, your bore.

  22. .

    GOP rep: 'Nobody dies' from not having health care

    Raul Labrador:

    "No one wants anybody to die," Labrador said. "You know, that line is so indefensible. Nobody dies because they don't have access to health care."


  23. 'sposed to mean you can go to the emergency room.

    DC speak.

  24. Everyone fears Russian Aircrafts!

    "Russia parades aircrafts, armies and tanks in massive show of power..."

  25. Dale had 'access' to health care, but he died, in the VA hospital in Spokane, because they hadn't done anything right earlier.

    They 'missed' the cancer, which was 'hiding' in the back of the tumor.

    Yessiree, Dale didn't die because he didn't have access to health care, he died because he had access to shitty health care, and to folks that didn't care whether he lived or died.

    He got the old VA death panel treatment. They gave him morphine while dying.

    Raul is down at Lewiston today, taking lots of heat, I imagine.

    He has really been taking a beating in the papers....

    1. When I had my prostate cancer biopsy, they took 12 snips from all over the prostate.

      They didn't miss anything.

      But then I had a private doc.

      And a good legal case if they had botched the biopsy.

      And now, after external beam radiation therapy, and three years of watching, I've been declared prostate cancer free, and released from the doc's care, told only to 'keep an eye on things' with my primary care doctor.

      It's just a matter of time, though, until something else raises its head....

      Which is true of all of us.

      One poet says:

      "Do not go gently into that good night
      Fight, fight against the dying of the light"

      Another says:

      "The woods are lovely, dark, and deep....

      But I have promises to keep
      And miles to go before I sleep

      And miles to go before I sleep"

      So, while sometimes feeling the lovely dark deep pull of old man thanatos, I'll do my best to stick around and help out my folks.

      I've also signed a "Living Will", a pull the plug document, if things get really tough....

      Provide, Provide !

  26. On the wettest muddiest track I've ever seen Always Dreaming took an early lead, and never looked back.

    All the other horses and jocks mud spattered head to foot, but not Always Dreaming, who looked like he'd just come out of the laundromat.

    If you don't like the Kentucky Derby there is something wrong with you.

  27. Snowing in Truckee

  28. "In a campaign that has seen favourites drop out of the race one after the other, Le Pen, who wants to close borders, ditch the euro currency and clamp down on migration, is nevertheless closer to elected power than the far right has ever been in Western Europe since World War Two."


    Wanting borders, a nation, and an immigration policy. is "far right."

  29. Lots of folks are missing the point. The North Koreans want what they have always wanted, a Communist Korean peninsula. China wants a Communist Korean peninsula. The scheduled talks between the two Korea's is Kim Jong-un's opportunity to press their neighbors into help to shore up North Korea's failing economy and starving people. South Korea only has two options. Corroborate with Kim Jong-un or risk nuclear oblivion or wait for the US to strike North Korea in which case they will be oblivion is assured. Which choice do you think they will make?