Links – December 12, 2016

Sorry to be depressing, but we need to be aware of how we can lose our democracy, given many of the things that Donald Trump and his administration-to-be have said and done. It’s not an overnight change, but one little thing after another. The best thing is to avoid getting into those little things. More from Masha Gessen, this time on similarities between how Trump is likely to govern and what we see in Vladimir Putin. Read More

Trump Talks To Tsai

Donald Trump has been taking (or making, hard to tell) phonecalls from foreign leaders congratulating him on his electoral victory. He has been doing this without the benefit of briefing by the State Department, official interpreters and note-takers, or anyone else who has the US’s interests at heart, possibly on unsecured phones. Pakistan released what appears to be a verbatim transcription of his part of the call, featuring the words “fantastic” and “amazing” rather too many times and promising to help Pakistan with whatever. India was not pleased. Read More

More Election Commentary

More links to what I consider good commentary on the election.

Mourning Trump and the America we could have been. I would say we still can be, but it will take a lot more work than I anticipated.

What now? What may happen and suggestions for our responses.

What Europe needs to hear from Trump. I have this schizophrenic feeling, between two worlds, when I read something like this that assumes (because it must in order to make its own kind of sense) that Trump is a normal candidate, will be a normal president. He has nothing prepared that can respond to these very reasonable and normal expectations.

What Vladimir Putin wants to hear from Trump. Charles Pierce says that we should be hearing about Trump’s Russian connections, but of course we know we won’t. Crazy idea: If something truly disqualifying about them were found before the Electoral College meets on December 19, they could vote Trump out. I tweeted links to what I collected on those connections this morning. Haven’t seen much new since I collected most of it in July.

China warns Trump against abandoning climate change deal.

A view from India: The end of America’s soft power?

The real reason Donald Trump got elected? We have a white extremism problem.

Neil Buchanan on the media’s role in electing Donald Trump.

An open letter to my former colleagues in the US government’s civil, foreign, intelligence, and military services. By Richard Nephew, one of the negotiators of the Iran nuclear deal.

Links – November 7, 2016

A relaxing photo of fall color in Kazakhstan.

A few election-related links first. After the election, we need to make some changes. One is that the Republican Party must rejoin the nation in looking for solutions and bettering citizens’ situations. These declarations may be to mobilize the hard core of nihilistic supporters, but carrying them out will be disastrous for the nation. Donald Trump is taking Karl Rove’s dictum about creating one’s own reality to the extreme. Another thing that Republicans must give up. And the feminist revolution must include men. Read More

Links – October 17, 2016

Pakistan and India are glaring and occasionally shooting at each other again. Since both have nuclear weapons and no warning time at all to decide what it is the other has in that missile, this is a particularly dangerous situation. Here’s a good idea: Russia and China, which have good relations with the two, should press for a peaceful accommodation and better ways for India and Pakistan to relate to each other. Vladimir Putin seems to want to be seen as a peacemaker. He’s blown that in Syria. India and Pakistan present a real opportunity. Read More

Links – August 1, 2016

The rest of the world keeps going, even though Donald Trump is sucking all the oxygen out of the coverage. And I’m as guilty as anyone. It’s hard to know how much to say about the ignorant and bigoted comments that appear daily. There does need to be pushback, but not at all clear how much. Read More

Links – April 16, 2016

My op-ed in Physics Today on the use of fear in discussions of nuclear terrorism. It appears that a number of other people are seeing that hyping the fear factor isn’t the best way to discuss these issues: Elisabeth Eaves in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Al Mauroni in War on the Rocks, and a group educating journalists on nuclear matters. Also some good sense on how to protect nuclear plants from terrorists. Photo from the Physics Today article. Read More