Trump’s Border Wall Bullsh!t

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The proposal of building a nearly 2,000 mile border wall for the purposes of keeping illegal immigrants out of the country is, in short, infantile. At length, the proposal fails to understand not only the actual strategic function that walls provide, but history, economics, geography and logistics, therefore making it insulting to our intellect that we’d be expected to think this is even a real suggestion.

However, now that we are expected to take this idea seriously, it should be explained why we shouldn’t and instead reject it for the clownishly stupid idea it is. Perhaps most importantly is the simple fact it wont work. Now, despite being what most would consider “liberal” I have a dear fondness for walls as they do in fact keep me sheltered from the elements and provide a place for my things. They also serve to prevent strange people and animals from simply wandering in. However, they do not keep out animals, or people, that are actively attempting to enter: animals and insects get in, sometimes entirely by accident, and walls only slow down home invaders.

This leads us to the actual strategic purposes of walls. Walls can provide strategic cover which wont be needed on a border wall. Walls also provide defensive benefits be it for ancient towns, castles, or modern military fortifications. Some will insist that since castles and entire towns throughout much of history had walls and that we should too. However, unlike the walls in our homes, military fortifications are required to be manned in order to repel invading armies and they don’t always hold up. Fortifications like these were meant to force a costly siege, or to buy time: time to escape, or time for an allied force to arrive and dispel the enemy.

The subject of castles and ancient towns bring’s us to history which has brought us two notable large scale walls: the Great Wall of China and Hadrian’s Wall as the northernmost border of the Roman Empire in what is now modern Britain. Hadrian’s Wall was less than one hundred miles long and took fourteen years to build. The Great Wall is over ten thousand miles long and was constructed over a period of two thousand years. The purpose of both walls was to keep out raiding barbarian hordes. Both had limited success even with soldiers garrisoned and patrolling them: the barbarians still broke through, or just went around. They both ended up as expensive ruins that failed in their explicit purpose.

The construction of a border wall would also likely isolate small pieces of US land on the southern side of the wall because basic geography and logistics, like what happened to this golf course in Texas. Rivers, like the Rio Grande, don’t flow in linear patterns and thus our border with Mexico isn’t linear. There would be spots where logistics necessitate the wall be a certain distance from the river and would thus sequester some small areas of the US on Mexico’s side of the wall. Furthermore, construction along the Rio Grande would destroy crucial habitats for some endangered species while desecrating sacred native sites, but these haven’t stopped smaller fences from being erected and doing everything I just mentioned.

Finally, there’s economic cost. The construction alone cost more than twenty billion dollars, not including at least that much money every year after for maintenance. We will pay for every mismanaged cent through our taxes, not Mexico. And should we implement import tariffs we’ll be picking up the inflated cost on those imports as well.

The wall would cost us billions, upon billions of dollars and could be defeated by ropes and ladders and that’s if they don’t just take a plane and overstay their VISA.

~David T.K.~

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Trump Is Going Full Hitler

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Donald Trump, Donald Trump, Donald Trump! If you say his name three times in a mirror he’ll call you a loser on Twitter. His ubiquitous presence in the news is hard to escape, but escaping is the last thing we should be doing, both metaphorically and literally. We need to pay attention more than ever before because Trump’s rise to and use of power have always been at least Hitler adjacent while always moving closer to going full Hitler – and you never go full Hitler.

There have been many voices, particularly on the left, calling out now President Garrison Trump and his continued authoritarian rhetoric during the campaign. These voices we’re all assured by his supporters “Oh, he won’t actually do it,” or “He’s just saying things to get elected,” or, my personal favorite “He didn’t mean it, he was just joking.” We’re only on week two and got not just the Muslim ban – proving those comforting voices to be yugely wrong, but we also got the dangerous positioning of Trump loyalists in key positions of power like Steve Super Racist Bannon, a white nationalist propagandist and founder of the “Alt-Right” rag Breitbart “News,” to the National Security Council. And apparently that’s the council that decides important shit like which American citizens need to be killed with drones. These aren’t opinions, they are facts. Though my opinion of the facts is evident, it doesn’t change the dangerous reality.

So here we are, we voted to get into a car that’s driven by an angry chimpanzee under the attempted direction off zoo keepers at the edge of a cliff. Or maybe, the angry chimp is smarter than I give him credit for. Either way, we cannot relegate the people warning us of an impending authoritarian state to suffer Cassandra’s curse any longer. He’s following in the footsteps of dictators before him that rose to power in free and democratic nations. And don’t forget, almost every president has expanded the power of the executive branch to some degree, unfortunately all that cumulative power is now in the hands of an idiot con-man at best.

The entire situation get’s worse when you consider that both houses of Congress are controlled by the Republicans – the same Republicans who hijacked the Supreme Court. Why that hasn’t been a much bigger story I don’t know. One political party went against the explicit instructions of the Constitution and denied to even vote on Obama’s nominee. They were even making plans to refuse a vote on Clinton’s nominee had she won. Basically, Senate Republicans were able to take control of another branch of government while undermining the authority of the President and the Constitution. But hey, both parties have been chipping away at the Constitution for years in their own ways so it was only a matter of time before they start ignoring altogether. It was also just a matter of time before we elected someone who would take full advantage of the preexisting cumulative executive powers while pushing the boundaries even further.

What does this leave us with? We have a tense, divided populous with one party controlling all three branches of government after two hundred plus years of power grabs and Constitutional erosion. Both significant portions of the population and government now openly scapegoat minorities and a known racist is going to be on the National Security Council. Keep these things in mind for this next scenario: Trump does something dickish, dumb, and or dangerous, or police shoot another black man for no reason again. Protests are held, but turn into riots – perhaps spontaneously, or perhaps through police instigation. Trump will then “send in the Feds,” or declare martial law in predominately “urban” areas. Or maybe activists and community leaders start “disappearing” because people like Bannon have labeled them a “threat to national security.”

We’re a very angry, divided nation with the most controversial president we’ve ever had and it’s not the usual course of history for such high tensions to just evaporate. We need to keep watching and resisting Trump’s agenda, but we need to also be prepared just in case he goes full Hitler.

~David T.K.~

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2017: A List Of Mostly Dire Predictions

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I’d originally written this at the end of December and thought I’d scheduled it to post on New Year’s Day. It didn’t. Then I debated posting it all and forgot about it. I came upon it again while cleaning up my desktop, made a few updates and figured why not?

… … …

Can we be optimistic about the rest of the new year? Certainly, but it’d be reckless. This year will be, in every way, the sequel to the instant horror classic that’s been 2016. Maybe you’ll claim I’m being pessimistic to which I’ll just say realist, so hear me out first. Now, who am I to make predictions? I’m not sure, but the “experts” got the entire campaign season wrong, so why not give it a shot? My predictions will also be slightly more detailed than my centuries old predecessor, the famed prognosticator Nostradamus the Vague.

Racism will get worse. There are racists out there who support and are emboldened by president Trump, like the KKK and Neo Nazis. Racist acts of aggression and vandalism will spike around inauguration day, but plateau at a rate higher than previous years.

Conversely, counter protests and demonstrations will increase. More than a few of these will turn into riots and the movement condemned as a whole by many, be it Black Lives Matter, Anti-Trump protestors, or whomever. Protestors will be beaten, pepper sprayed, maced, and the works over by law enforcement, but violence will be committed on all sides.

President Trump will shake up world stability and break it, if not it 2017, then before his term is up. His actions and even his Tweets now impact international diplomatic relations. At the very least, he’ll break whatever norms are in place and no one will know what to expect which is itself enough to put everyone on edge. There are lots of potential spots for conflict just waiting for their Franz Ferdinand moment.

Access to abortions and women’s health facilities more broadly, will be under siege and increasingly difficult to find. Millions of people will lose their healthcare, social programs will be cut, poverty and homeless will surge.

Wildfires will blaze through forests and towns in, but not limited to, the American west. There’s the increasing probability of a great Appalachian wildfire, so much so it’s destined to become the new seasonal expectation.

In connection to, and really preceding, the wildfires are extended drought. Temporary relief may come, but for California and other areas like the northern Appalachians the seasons just wont bring as much rain as they used to.

Storms and sea surges will cause massive flooding all along the east coast. There’ll be fatalities, displaced populations, and billions of dollars in damage.

It will be the hottest year ever recorded, because that happens like every year now.

There will be no northern sea ice left by the end of summer.

More famous people will die.

The beginning of another Great Recession (at best) by the beginning of 2018.

The police will kill more than 100 unarmed black men.

A mass shooting will happen every few months to every few weeks on average.

Certain rights will be threatened, specifically ones like marriage equality, voting rights, and freedom of the press.

We’ll also see more videos of police doing good things, protestors hugging cops, people saving animals, and they’ll be other good things too, probably. Just statistically speaking at least, right? But it wont be enough to turn the tide of incoming category 5 shit-storm that’s about to hit the fan.

Does any of that sound unrealistic? Or are you thinking it doesn’t take a rocket scientist, or an expert political analyst to make those predictions?

You’re right. I’ll probably post a slightly updated version of it for my predictions of 2018. But, that’s also why I’ve made a few very specific ones, so just in case they come true you an say you read it here first!

NASA will announce the discovery of an aquatic alien fossil on Mars.

A small, but powerful meteor will strike a populated area.

A devastating solar storm on par with the Carrington Event will hit the Earth.

An entire city will be swallowed the sea. Maybe a few.

And the Patriots will win the Super Bowl.

Even if only a handful, or fewer come to pass that’d still make me more accurate than most prognosticators and analysts during the entire campaign season.

~David T.K.~

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Standing Rock: A Modest Suggestion Of Strategy

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Avery White/ Al Jazeera

A war is being waged right now against indigenous people by state-backed corporations to make profit from a dangerous and increasingly obsolete resource. The protestors and even journalists covering the conflict at Standing Rock are having false charges brought against them, being brutalized and maimed, and the police are lying about it. Despite the recent and unprecedented victory in the form of the Army Corp of Engineers legally blocking construction of the project pending a two year review, it may still be allowed to go forward. The company building it certainly seems to think so: they released a statement that they “…are fully committed to ensuring that this vital project is brought to completion and fully expect to complete construction of the pipeline without any additional rerouting in and around Lake Oahe. Nothing this Administration has done today changes that in any way.” It’s also been reported that the equipment is still on the work site.

This is just a battle in a much larger war: oil vs green energy; eminent domain vs. tribal sovereignty; profit and crony capitalism vs. the rights and health of indigenous people and US citizens. So, perhaps it’s time to treat it like the war it is. The US has a long standing tradition history of breaking treaties with the native populations and then illegally seizing control of their land. The tribes across the nation, including Standing Rock could justifiably act to retake their land as any sovereign nation would. Maybe they’ll get bad PR, but since when has that stopped people from protesting, or taking a stand?

This standoff will eventually turn into a siege one way, or another if a permanent solution fails to come about through dialogue, or the courts. The lull should be used to prepare. Trenches should be dug, walls erected and the entire camp fortified. Shields akin to what riot police have could be donated, or shields akin to what ancient infantry had could be fashioned from wood then reinforced using thin sheets of metal, or other materials that may be capable of at least resisting rubber bullets. Since winter is coming, they could borrow tactics from Ukraine protestors by constructing fortifications of ice and snow. Trash bags filled with snow can be stacked together and can compact into solid ice. In Ukraine, they even built a modest trebuchet to launch projectiles at incoming forces.

However, if the Sioux can hold their ground it may be time to go on the offensive. Through ancient and medieval times armies utilized armored siege weapons and small, portable armored covers (upturned boats, or siege rams for example) for protection while laying siege to an opponent. Similar implements could be devised, or modern cars and automobiles modified to have tougher, more protective exteriors: Mythbusters bulletproofed a car fairly well with phonebooks.

Before moving on the security forces and seizing the land the pipeline is on, a small force should be dispatched north to Bismarck (A rejected location for the pipeline because locals feared a spill). The attack will vary in scope depending on the size of the detachment. But the dispatched forces could utilize ancient methods to confront riot police with an organized opposition. If large enough, they could sack, pillage, and burn Bismarck to the ground. This will likely lead to a call for reinforcements to Bismarck which will either distract the “law enforcement” from Standing Rock, or perhaps even call the forces from Standing Rock for support.

While this is going on, the forces remaining at standing rock will send up drones to scout the area and attack most accordingly. The Standing Rock forces can then move in with shields and fortified cars, or whatever else they have at their disposal. A phalanx of water protectors and armored siege vehicles can then surround and take prisoner the agents protecting the pipeline. They can also repurpose all of the equipment. If the US then agrees to not build the pipeline the prisoners will be released.

Or we could start building solar roads instead of pipelines.

Satirically yours, 

~David T.K.~

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Fighting ISIS and Ideology: A New Approach

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In the wake of the terror attacks in Paris the other night, that ISIS has claimed responsibility for, (or any abhorrent act of extremism) our initial visceral reaction is to literally fuck’em all to death, nuke the entire Middle East, or bomb it back to the pre-Cambrian. And it would be satisfying to annihilate our enemies. People say they don’t like violence, but they’re lying to themselves most of the time- we fucking love it when we can justify it.

But ISIS is an ideology that’s giving people in a massively fucked up region a direction and a purpose. And every time we kill innocents in a drone strike, or air raid we create more angry people who want revenge, or arguably justice, for those killings. We’re in their sacred land and that pisses them off too. Make no mistake, I have no sympathy for ISIS, but it’s important we understand them, their culture, their history, their motives if we want to fight them and win. Unfortunately you cannot bomb an ideology into extinction with the possible exception of mass genocide.

So what the fuck do we do? Well, I have a few ideas:

First, we should probably stop being the world’s police. We’re not good it anyway and we don’t right wrongs in foreign nations unless it directly impacts our national interest. However, in this case, we have a moral and strategic obligation to defeat ISIS.

Second, we need to study them like aliens study abductees. We need to know their hopes, dreams, and reasons for living. We must know our enemies like we know ourselves. Then, and only then, can we devise a strategy.

We already send a lot of aid money to countries all around the world. Instead of placing in the hands of corrupt regimes who keep most of it, let’s build schools. Better yet, let’s create jobs and pay locals to build their own schools, hospitals, libraries, better housing, infrastructure, etc. If we can give people in the region a better alternative than joining ISIS they’ll probably take it. They’re people just like us for the most part- there are certainly some crazies in there too I’m sure. But since most of them are regular folks we need to realize they’re joining ISIS, by and large, because they have few other options. They could resist and most likely be killed in a gruesome manor, perhaps getting their families killed in the process, or at the very least leaving them with one less member of their family. The region is filled with sectarian violence, oppressive regimes, people have lost their means of making a living as a massive drought hit Syria in the recent past compounding existing problems and eventually leading to the refugee crisis we have now. With livelihoods destroyed and no voice in their government, many have taken up arms as the best way to achieve both.

If they have jobs, secure livelihoods, representation in state matters, and most importantly a purpose, they’ll not only have no time for blowing shit it, but probably no desire to either- at least no more so than the rest of us who love watching “Mythbusters.”

This is obviously a massive, intricate undertaking and would probably require boots on the ground for a while, be it UN, or a coalition. You can’t build a new school if terrorist armies can just roll up, kill everyone, and destroy all progress you’ve made.

We spend enough money to probably fill one of the ships from “Independence Day” on war and all we’ve gotten is more violence, a new, stronger enemy, and a much less stable region. So, maybe it’s about time we try some actual nation building and not necessarily in our image. The tenets of Islam are being used to justify cruel and draconian laws, but that’s something they need to fix for themselves. Imagine Canada, Russia, or China, coming into the US and saying something like “No more eating meat. It’s cruel to animals!” Or even “No more assholes like Kim Davis are allowed in government!” They might have a point, but we wont give a shit because it’s our culture and because fuck you.

Believe me, I want to see those fucker swaying from a noose, but there’s a time and a place for violence in conflicts and this may not be one of those times.

“I have always found that mercy bears richer fruits than strict justice.”

Abraham Lincoln

~David T. Kukulkan~

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Black Lives Matter Damnit!

IMG_0347 2Where the fuck do you even begin with this? I feel dirty for writing this because it feels like it’s politicizing tragedy. It shouldn’t be a conservative vs. liberal, but it kind of is.

Fox and conservative media outlets spin a very different narrative than liberal ones: black deaths caused by police are quickly written off and excused because these black people must have been criminals and the officers involved were just doing their jobs. Liberals spin the unfortunate victim of racism story. Neither is entirely accurate, but one of them is a lot closer to the truth. Have there been black criminals shot and killed by the police? Absolutely! But, have there been a disproportionate number of black people killed by police when compared to white deaths? Yes! Police kill white people for no excusable reason too, but we white people live with less fear than our black fellow humans.

Something has happened online since that crazy black guy (apparently he had actual metal health problems) gunned down two officers. “Share if you stand with our officers” and “Stop the war against cops” memes have spouted up faster than a teenagers acne after falling asleep with a pizza on their face. That’s great that people are outraged over senseless violence against those who are supposed to serve and protect us. However, and maybe it’s just my pool of online acquaintances, but there weren’t that many “Black Lives Matter” memes shared, despite the larger number of deaths and violence against the black community. Dozens of black people are murdered and the movement that sprung up is dismissed by so many because “racism is over.” Two officers are shot and it’s a war against cops. Some media outlets have been blaming the Black Lives Matter movement for the shooting, despite no connection between the shooter and the movement other than the color of his goddamned skin! It’s being called a “hate group” and the “Murder Movement.” Shut the fuck up!

While it’s hard to find reliable or trustworthy sources, most numbers will show a much higher incarceration rate for blacks than whites and a disproportionate number of black deaths from police brutality than whites. Also, and there are some conflicting reports, there’s been no significant increase of violence against officers.

Black Lives Matter doesn’t advocate violence against law enforcement, or anybody! The reason we’re saying, specifically, “‘Black’ Lives Matter” is because those are the lives being cut down most frequently right now. Do police lives matter? Fucking duh! Do white lives matter? Fucking duh! All lives matter, but not all lives are receiving the same same amount violence, or outrage at said violence. When a regular Joey-Bag-O-Donuts even looks at an officer the wrong way the offender is tried, convicted, and locked up quickly, no questions asked. But when officers kill Joey-Bag-O-Donuts, we’re lucky if there’s even an investigation, let alone a trial and conviction.

I stand with and support our men and women wearing the blue uniforms (even though most of the ones I’ve encountered have been dicks, they don’t deserve to die, and they have a high-risk, high-stress, occupation) but I also stand with and support Black Lives Matter. Basically I’m on the side of less killing each other. Everybody’s on that side – with the small exception of some extremist, violent, and or crazy people, who probably would have ended up that way regardless.

But also, no matter how much you support the boys in blue, don’t tell me you don’t get anxious, or even scared, when you’re driving and a police cruiser pops up behind you – even if you know you’re doing nothing wrong. But that’s because we’ve all heard the stories of people, both black and white being killed, or brutalized by the police. Now imagine you’re black (only if you’re not black, cause actual black people don’t have to imagine) and you suddenly have a lot more stories and stats to make you afraid. Hell, if you’re black, you probably have personal experiences telling you to be wary of law enforcement. Police brutality and abuse of power are very real and black people have to deal with the brunt of that bullshit.

So let’s not go with the one dimensional narrative the media portrays and instead understand the nuances of the situation. There are good and bad people in every occupation and walk of life. We can condemn police brutality and at the same time condemn violence against police officers. But only one of those is pandemic.

~David T. Kukulkan~

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Are Millennials The Worst Generation Ever?

Millennials on the move!

Millennials on the move!

Are we, Millennials, really the worst generation ever? That clip from “The Newsroom” is always making the rounds on Facebook and the character’s stats are all accurate within a point or two- fact checked it myself a while ago. But is he right about us?

Cause Millennials weren’t the ones who covered the environment with pollution and greenhouse gases that now threaten our way of life and our very existence. But remember that time Millennials spilled a bunch of oil in the Gulf of Mexico? Or how about that time we funded the shit out of climate change deniers and their interests? No! You fucking don’t because that was one of the other idiot generations. Which is partly understandable since previous generation were pretty fucking stupid. Well, ignorant at least, because they simply didn’t know what we know now. But that’s no excuse to keep practicing the same dated techniques and espousing the same archaic rhetoric. Previous generations also fucked up the economy so bad it’s impact reverberated around the entire goddamn world. They were, and some still are, pretty racist too. And homophobic.

Given the same circumstances and limited knowledge of the dark ages whose to say our generation wouldn’t have made the same greedy, irresponsible, and destructive decisions? Doesn’t really matter though because what’s done is done and we had nothing to do with, but we are the ones picking up the tab and cleaning up these catastrofucks.

But we have our own problems too! Like staring at our phones all the time. That’s as bad as the racism thing, right? No? Yeah, not quite. Well, we’re always online wasting time and our politics extend only as far as our Facebook posts reach. We don’t make a lot of money either and maybe still live at home because we’re so fucking lazy. We also only give a shit about a cause for a week tops, then something else happens and we forget all about that last shooting. We have only surface, superficial knowledge of the issues facing contemporary society too.

Nah, just kidding. Some of that’s true, and some it may be more true for others. But remember Occupy? The Arab Spring? Or what about the Black Lives Matter movement? Yeah? Cause that was fucking us being on our phones. Remember when Obama got elected? And reelected? That may have largely been millennials voting for the first time. And the money thing? Well, we all know who trashed the economy and refuses to share profits with employees who make those profits possible. As for the issues and superficial knowledge, we’re doping the best we can with the literally constant stream of news! Current generations will know more than some of the previous generations combined! It’s no wonder it can be tough to stay informed.

Certainly all generations have done stupid shit and we’ll certainly have our turn at that, we just haven’t had enough time to fuck things up as much as the Baby Boomers yet. Here’s the thing though, we are learning from your mistakes, Boomers! We are growing in number while yours shrink because you’re all old and dying! So get used to our liberal values and tolerance towards others. And we’re gonna vote the shit out of you next election!

~David T. Kukulkan~

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