Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The Political Page, Part 2, T+74 -- April 5, 2017

Syria, Assad, chemical weapons: what the hell was Obama doing for eight years? Listening to the press conference this morning, one gets the feeling that is the question being asked inside the White House. I see Jared is back from the Middle East. My hunch is that we won't be waiting for January, 2018, to see Trump's response to latest "gas attack" nor will we be seeing any trip to the UN to get permission.

Be afraid: cupcakes, snowflakes, fruitcakes, be very afraid.  Be very afraid. Hearing Trump answer a question during today's press conference with the king of Jordan suggests there will be some interesting news coming out of the Middle East (and perhaps out of the Korean peninsula) any month now.

Fat man, be afraid, very afraid: did two missiles blow up on the pad? I missed the story; saw the headline. Apparently two NOKO missile launches in past 48 hours did not go as planned. Hmmm.

Pocahontas: I see the national average for women's pay is 80% of men's pay. In Elizabeth Warren's office, bless her, it is 71%. Whatever.

Filling the void. I had no problem with Steve Bannon being removed from the National Security Council, but "filling the void" with Rick Perry is the ultimate insult. I assume Perry will carry a "3 x 5 index card" with walking directions on how to get to the "war room." 

The Literature Page

The tornado siren just went off -- for a steady 30 - 90 seconds. I walked down to the mail box. Everyone was out and about, the routine, most probably thought it was the midday call to prayer or perhaps the siren announcing the break for lunch. [Later: I am told by a reader from Minnesota that states require a testing of tornado sirens annually, occurring about this time, early April. That would make sense.]

Whatever. I came away from the mail box with two huge wins: a) an Omaha Steak circular announcing a 1/2-off sale and free shipping; and, b) the most recent issue of  The New York Review of Books.

[Later, for the record, I no longer order anything from Omaha Steak for myself. However, when they offer a 1/2-off sale and free shipping, I always order something for my brother-in-law out in California. I did that a few minutes ago.]

Back to the New York Review of Books: a quick glance of the bios of the contributors and looking through the entire contents, this should be a good issue. Not one anti-Trump review or essay. There is a caricature of Trump and an article reviewing a book by a NYU lawyer but that's fine.

The first article I will read: "Postcards from the Edge," by Joyce Carol Oates, writing on Mary Miller, a minimalist fiction writer, even more minimalist than Ernest Hemingway. The best quote so far:
Any life will seem dramatic if you omit mention of most of it."

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