[guest post by Dana]
Hello! If any of you are fans of the British show Endeavor and watched the final episode of the series, let me know in the comments. We need too talk.
First news item
While the White House is expected to announce that the U.S. will “waive U.S. law prohibiting the production, use or transfer of cluster munitions with a failure rate of more than 1 percent” and send them to Ukraine, Mike Pence explained to Hugh Hewitt why our military support is vital to Ukraine if we want to keep our troops from entering the fray:
Providing Ukraine with the military support needed to turn back the Russian invasion is crucial if the U.S. wants to avoid going to war against Russia, former vice president and current presidential hopeful Mike Pence says.
Pence, speaking on the Hugh Hewitt Show, said Russia’s military operation in Ukraine “is not just warfare. It’s evil,” adding that he believes Russian leader Vladimir Putin is facing sharp divisions inside Russia. Pence promised that, if elected, he would ensure Ukraine received whatever aid was required to win.
“I have no doubt that if Vladimir Putin overran Ukraine, it would not be too long, Hugh, before the Russian military crossed a border where we would have to send our fighting men and women to fight against them,” Pence said. He said he was a supporter of Ronald Reagan’s doctrine that “if you’re willing to fight the enemies of the United States on your soil, we’ll give you the means to fight them there so our men and women in uniform don’t have to fight them.“
About the cluster bombs, human rights activists have registered concerns about their use. They have been deemed as “inhumane and indiscriminate, in large part because of high failure rates that litter the landscape with unexploded submunitions that endanger both friendly troops and civilians, often for decades after the end of a conflict.” The U.S. is not party to the convention banning their use that 120 nations have signed onto. Neither is Russia, which has allegedly used them against Ukraine in great quantity. This is an eye-opening pushback to the critics of the U.S. sending cluster bombs to Ukraine and why it’s vital that Ukraine be victorious over Russia:
Speaking of all the drama over cluster munitions for Ukraine.
Let’s resume this conversation when all those critics sitting in their comfortable air-conditioned offices somewhere in the West find themselves in a situation:
– when their nations have to fight an existential war against an adversary enjoying overwhelming supremacy in artillery and air power, with a far larger economy and population, with a totalitarian political regime that knows no bounds and is ready to spend any amount of cannon fodder, including suicidal convicts and mercenaries.
– when they see their own hometowns wiped off the earth along with their population and proudly proclaimed as “liberated”
– when their nations have to mobilize way over 1 million men and women to the military and to try and keep their shattered economy at least somewhat afloat while trying to stay as free and democratic as possible
– when they have to wake up in the dead of night due to missile and drone attacks and hope it’s not about their neighborhood and their house right here and now, and when they realize this is not going to end until the war is over
– when they realize the ongoing war has inflicted major damage to their country’s critical infrastructure and that it continues throwing the nation decades back in time
– when their military & political leadership has to spend endless months begging for weapons and assistance for their war effort, paying with the lives of their soldiers for every day in deliberations and risk management. Just to get at least something and go on saving the country.
– when their militaries have to break through one of the hardest systems of ground fortification in modern history, having to use as little as they managed to get, losing soldiers and vehicles due to a dire lack of air support and endless minefields the enemy had so much time to prepare
– when they all realize that their military has come so far against all the odds, but if it ultimately fails, their nations are absolutely done, they will all highly likely find themselves in pits with bullets in the back of their heads.
Now THEN I’d be very interested if they think their militaries need cluster munitions to go on fighting.
And speaking of civilian safety — the Ukrainian military in this war has repeatedly proven to be generally careful and discriminate when it comes to the use of weapons — well, to the extent possible in such a high-intensity war.
Especially in contrast with the bloodbath that Russia commits in this country on a daily basis.
So, dear ladies and gentlemen, I am very curious about why certain organizations overtly accuse Ukraine of putting civilians in war zones in jeopardy with cluster munitions before Ukraine even gets these munitions.
And I’ll just leave this here too:
The US keeps cluster bombs in order use them in a near-peer war. We’d have no qualms using them in wars with any foe threatening our troops. That’s why we have them in our inventory. This is a deeply irresponsible title & framing by @nytimes https://t.co/dtGIgonwGm
— Alexander S. Vindman ❎ (@AVindman) July 7, 2023
Second news item
I still feel strongly that the Supreme Court needs to stand on the side of the American people, not on the side of corporations and the wealthy.https://t.co/yqM5AmDvqh
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) July 6, 2023
Since when has standing on anyone’s side been the role of the Supreme Court? Because according to the White House website on the Judicial Branch, taking any party’s side is not their role:
[T]he Court’s task is to interpret the meaning of a law, to decide whether a law is relevant to a particular set of facts, or to rule on how a law should be applied.
Of course Hillary knows this, but why not politicize the Court when you can…
P.S. “I, _________, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me as _________ under the Constitution and laws of the United States. So help me God.”
Third news item
There is so much to be said for love and commitment. Love, with its fierce and fragile breath that fills two beings, meshes two lives, and ultimately begets an unbreakable couple in it for the long haul because, perhaps, even during the inevitable trial and tribulation that challenge most marriages, the thoughts of not being together is unthinkable. Happy anniversary to a couple who has withstood it all, and held to their true north longer than most of us have been alive:
On Friday, July 7, or 7/7, Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter will reach their 77th wedding anniversary…
On July 7, 1946, when a 21-year-old U.S. Naval Academy graduate married the 18-year-old salutatorian of Plains High School, who could have imagined that it could last that long? According to the U.S. Census Bureau, only 6% of married couples make it to even 50 years.
The Carters have survived through a Georgia governorship, a presidency, a Nobel Peace Prize, building their Atlanta-based nonprofit Carter Center, eradicating diseases and now their biggest challenge — failing health.
The report notes that “Jimmy Carter, 98, went into home hospice care in February. In May, the family revealed that 95-year-old Rosalynn Carter has dementia.
God bless the Carters.
Fourth news item
Nearly two weeks ago, members of the House Freedom Caucus took a vote to oust Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., from the ultraconservative group. It’s still unclear whether that vote was successful.
Since the June 23 Freedom Caucus meeting, Chairman Scott Perry, R-Pa., and Greene have had multiple conversations. But a Republican source familiar with the conversations said Perry has not directly notified Greene that she has been kicked out of the caucus.
Another Republican source, who requested anonymity to discuss internal deliberations, said Perry has not brought up the subject because he wants to sit down and talk to Greene about it in person, which is likely to happen next week.
There were “multiple efforts to text, email, leave voicemail messages to her and her staff, which were not responded to,” the board member said. “And I suspect because she knew she was being dismissed from the Freedom Caucus, and a little bit like someone refusing service from a legal standpoint … if I’m not served, then maybe it doesn’t take effect.”
The lawmaker added: “It is my understanding, yes, that Chairman Perry made multiple efforts after the fact to notify her and she refused to meet with or to speak with Chairman Perry.”
Greene spokesman Nick Dyer said that characterization was inaccurate: “It’s sad that this source is hiding behind a veil of secrecy to tell an inaccurate account of how this all went down. Why not say it on record?”
Fifth news item
The Board of Supervisors shot down a plan to convert a single-family home in Nob Hill into 10 townhomes because the development would cast too much a shadow on a neighboring playground and community center.
In a 7-4 vote, the board on Tuesday upheld the appeal of neighbors and overturned an exemption from California’s environmental review process previously granted to 1151 Washington St. by The City’s Planning Commission.
“Sunlight and air are extremely important to the users of the recreation center as many of them live in small (single-room occupancy) buildings with no open space and common areas,” a representative from the Chinatown Community Development Center wrote in a letter to The City. The development center is against the townhome project.
Fastcast, a group hired by those fighting the conversion project, found that the four-story townhouse development could add as much as 17% more shadow cover to the playground and community center.
Already, the center is in shadow for 77% of available sunlight hours, the group found.
The next day [after the project was shot down], the U.S. Department of Transportation announced that San Francisco would be getting $20 million from a grant program that the Biden administration had allegedly retooled to incentivize zoning reforms and housing production.
That grant, from the Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) program, will pay for additional bus lanes, bike lanes, and road widenings in the city’s Bayview neighborhood.
Read the whole thing.
Sixth news item
For women, singing is forbidden in Iran. This woman is bravely singing in one of Esfahan’s most historical mosques. When the security agent tried to stop her, she resisted and continued. Brave Iranian women like her will some day bring down this most anti-woman regime. pic.twitter.com/NvSgQqIFND
— Masih Alinejad 🏳️ (@AlinejadMasih) July 6, 2023
Seventh news item
South Carolina housing development HOA will require
homeowners “patriots” to fly flag:
This development, which the company has described as “where freedom lives”, is for homeowners 55 and older. And not just any homeowners: “patriots” who will be required to fly the US flag on their properties, on a pole provided and maintained by the subdivision…When asked how this community will define patriotism, [Brock] Fankhauser [the real estate developer of 1776 Gastonia] responded obliquely that patriotism is a mountain landscape. “We’re in a valley right now, and to the extent that I can have any impact whatsoever on bringing us from a valley towards a peak, it would give me tremendous satisfaction,” he said via phone.
Fankhauser says the 1776 brand is a “movement” and the Gastonia project is “only the beginning”.
“We think that commonality and unification is a critical element in patriotism because it brings us to the broadest denominator of being in America,” Fankhauser told the Guardian. “We will shun any attempts to make this a political movement.” (Fankhauser donated to the Republican party and Donald Trump in 2020 and had previously donated to Republicans in 2003, according to Federal Election Commission records).
As to the legality of requiring homeowners to fly the flag:
1776 Gastonia will use a restrictive covenant that includes the flag stipulation. Restrictive covenants, a norm in residential real estate, allow homeowners associations to enforce rules and consistency in planned communities. Fankhauser defines them as a “pledge of allegiance” to the United States and “promises” among neighbors. He doesn’t anticipate that enforcing the flag provision will be an issue and has not included repercussions in the covenant if anyone refuses to fly the flag. The Guardian obtained the 1776 Gastonia covenant via email, but it had not yet been recorded in a Gaston County, North Carolina public database at the time of publication and is therefore not enforceable.
The implications for freedom of speech are not yet known as the properties have not yet gone on sale.
Eighth news item
Just your weekly reminder that this person is not mentally fit to hold office (in any capacity):
Have a great weekend!