It’s Deja Vu All Over Again: TREE OF SMOKE by Denis Johnson, a Review (of sorts)

As I sit and watch the surreal press conference between Trump and Putin after their so-called historic summit, where, after recently treating our allies like dog shit, Trump behaves like a sycophantic lapdog to a murderous dictator who wants nothing more than to destroy and subjugate the U.S. of America in retribution for how the U.S. of America destroyed and subjugated his beloved U.S.S.R., I am reminded of how I felt, or better yet, how my fuzzy, nightmarish memories leave me feeling from the surreal and tumultuous times in the U.S. of America during the late-Sixties through the mid-Seventies, you know, the era of national madness beginning with the Tet Offensive through the Watergate break-ins and subsequent hearings to Nixon’s humiliating yet palliative resignation and ending with America’s humiliating yet palliative retreat from South Vietnam.

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Can someone please shut this babbling self-promoting nutjob* up please?


*AKA The President of the United States so help us God

United States of Me

The egalitarianism typical of human hunter-gatherers is interesting when viewed in an evolutionary context. One of humanity’s two closest primate relatives, the chimpanzee, is anything but egalitarian, forming hierarchies that are dominated by alpha males. So great is the contrast with human hunter-gatherers that it is widely argued by palaeoanthropologists that resistance to being dominated was a key factor driving the development of human consciousness, language, kinship, and social organization. . . [WIKIPEDIA]

While I’m loathe to give credit to the hardcore Silicon tech bros due to so many of them having a bent toward misogyny and authoritarian ideals, which also made Trump so appealing to so many of these tech nerd dictator-wanna-bes, a la Peter Thiel, however, one of their ideals that somewhat sort of does appeal to me is a their striving toward a kind of hyper-freedom/ individualism, a striving so much so that some, again a la Peter Theil, are working to create these technology island havens of sort where each island would be governed autonomously as its own country and where, it seems to me, the island owners could proclaim themselves king or queen.

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Twilight Zone

I know Trump’s been in power for over a year, but I still haven’t fully come to terms with it.

I mean, never before Trump would I have ever considered that we would live in such an absurd and dangerous time where we would find a former CIA Director in a very public dispute with a sitting president, or in Trump’s case, a so-called sitting president.

In case you missed them, here are a few of John Brennan’s latest responses to Trump’s latest inanities:

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Trump is an evil Putin-light d–k!

Putin deals with any threat to his criminal regime through intimidation and murder.

At least Trump deals with the threats to his criminal behavior only through intimidation and firings.

No murders (that we know of). . .yet.

After months of bashing him on twitter and calling for his firing, Andrew McCabe, a career FBI agent, is the latest threat to Trump to be fired, which happened only 24-hours before McCabe was to retire, thereby stripping him of his government pension.

Trump is both Putin’s evil sycophant puppet, and a heartless, evil, small-handed dick.

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Death by Stooges

According to this, “The Trump administration apparently found [Peter Navarro, the little known stooge/fringe economist/mastermind behind Trump’s whacked-out trade war] after Jared Kushner, most likely thirsting for knowledge, searched for books about China on Amazon. There, he found Navarro’s “Death by China.”

My first experience with Navarro was seeing him interviewed by Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday. It was pretty scary. I’m not a fan of Fox News as a whole, but Wallace’s Fox New Sunday is always top-notch and holds all its guests accountable in my view. Wallace’s interview with Navarro was no exception — it gets pretty testy.

Navarro made a documentary based on his book, a book, it’s reported, that he carries around with him as he stalks the halls of the White House trying to scheme his way as close to Trump as he can get. Apparently, his scheming worked well, as evidenced by his ability to get Gary Cohn axed and the steel tariffs implemented.

Here’s the documentary. It’s long and I’m in the process of watching it. I’ll update this post with my thoughts of it, if any, after I finish… that is if it hasn’t forced me to rip my eyeballs out in anger first.

We’ll see. I consider myself rather hawkish on China so, despite Navarro’s quick rise to the top of the Trump Administration Stooge list, I’ll try to keep an open mind…



Featured photograph courtesy of Business Insider


Instead of watching last night’s Altered State of the Union address…

I watched this video, remembering “fondly” how utterly incompetent Dubya was and how utterly destructive and deadly his administration was, yet never once being suspicious that he was pining whole-heartedly to become Autocrat-in-Chief (I did have my suspicions about Dick Cheney, though) or fearing he was set on undermining the American Way of Life just so he could sycophantically gain favor, financially or otherwise, with Putin and his oligarchy friends.