Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Wednesday's Digressions

  • It appears we are going to normalize relations with Cuba. My respect for President Obama just went up a notch with that news. Aside from our failed drug war I cannot imagine a more outdated  and counterproductive (much less counter intuitive) policy than our prior isolation Cuba. It was motivated by politics- to keep from offending voters who haven't lived in Cuba for 20-50 years and an odd vengeance toward Cuba for our own failed policies and misadventures there. If we're interested in human rights- let them get more of a taste for free enterprise and at least help more Cubans have more US travel and trade dollars.
  • A related thought: The Castros can't live forever.
  • Another related thought: President Obama sticking to his guns and thawing our relations with Cuba will be seen as a great accomplishment that will help more Cubans in every way than our past 50 years of fail ever did.

    From brother in laws garage
  • An interesting video from ANNA news of a Syrian Arab Army armored unit maneuvering in urban terrain. Those guys are good. They must have a decent institutional memory and way of disseminating lessons learned and/or there are a lot of guys who have been on the front waaaaay too long.
  • The world lost one of my favorite historical figures in 2014- Hiroo Onada. Among my favorite things about him is when he came home he refused to cash his back paychecks and run for political office (although he was insanely popular). My maybe least favorite thing about him is in his memoir of his time fighting a war that was 30 years over he neglects to mention the dozens of people he killed from the time the war ended until he was repatriated. Norio Suzuki figures in his story and is also a favorite character from world history. He set out as he said to," find Lieutenant Onada, a panda and the abominable snowman- in that order." After finding Hiroo he quickly followed that up by finding a panda. He would be killed in an avalanche in the Himalayas in 1986 looking for the elusive Yeti and that is why I love him.
  • A couple of different articles I have read have wondered aloud if the US government is responsible for North Korea's internet outage. My guess is you would have more likelihood catching the culprit if you rounded up all the 14 year olds in San Mateo County California.
  • Israel has been catching flak for treating wounded jihadis coming out of Syria. The same people would be be calling Israel out for being monsters if they stood idly by and refused to treat them.
    No matter


    we just need people to know.


The Donald said...

Agree with you on the Cuba thing - not sure why so many get worked up about dropping the failed embargo. And, as you said, Fidel and Raul are not much long for this lifetime. Perestroika and the Castrobros own mortality will pave the way to the future.

Much has been written about the automotive time capsule that is Cuba. Wonder if those cars will have collector value, even if their extensive, uh, southern engineering has left them something short of Barrett-Jackson specimens. Heck, it could usher in a new collector category.

Love the Clay-Liston pic. Was using that contest in a pep talk to my staff a couple of weeks ago.

RPM said...

Completely agree about Cuba. I have a feeling Don might be onto something with a new collector class. With their homebrewed parts a "Havana" Bel Aire might bring decent collector coin.