SATURDAY 6-PACK: July 14, 2018

A weekly listing of articles, audio clips, and other tidbits I’ve encountered that seemed interesting, insightful, or otherwise useful

 

I’ve been on vacation … and then the usual catch-up when back at work.  Wow, has there been a lot happening!  There’s so much to pick from, but this is what I came up with

The Supreme Court pick … First, there was much speculation that turned out to be all wrong.  Then the prime-time, made for “reality” TV tastes (I’m sure …. which is why I avoided it) reveal.  After that, the real games begin.  Here are two pieces that caught my eye with some intriguing points for consideration of the latest nominee:

http://www.startribune.com/u-s-supreme-court-nomination-brett-kavanaugh-is-uncommonly-partisan-research-shows/487825491/

http://www.startribune.com/oh-come-on-no-one-s-a-strict-originalist/487912351/

 

Then there’s the trade war and what it might mean … Monday mornings on NPR, one of the regular hosts, David Greene this time, and Jonah Goldberg, Senior Editor at the National Review, discuss recent events, trends, and perspectives.  This time the major point is one of the very few areas where the current occupant has been consistent for decades: protectionist trade policies.  But this may not go the way he wants or expects it to …

https://www.npr.org/2018/07/09/627190257/there-are-worries-a-trade-war-could-cost-gop-its-majority-in-congress

 

Then it was on the the NATO summit.  First up, a tutorial about the history of NATO and a quick fact-check (necessary because the current occupant and verifiable facts are not well-acquatined):

https://www.npr.org/2018/07/14/629058526/a-short-history-of-nato

https://www.npr.org/2018/07/11/628137185/fact-check-trumps-claims-on-nato-spending

 

Just as the current occupant blustered and pouted his way through the G-7 summit a few weeks ago en route to his rendezvous with the leader of North Korea, his performance at he NATO summit was more of same.  This is an opinion piece, but the source has immense experience with NATO and a good working knowledge base.

https://www.npr.org/2018/07/13/628789350/opinion-the-problem-with-trumps-wrecking-ball-approach-to-nato

 

A local attorney wrote this piece for the Star Tribune a few weeks ago, when the most recent immigrant crisis was the focus of the news, those heart-wrenching accounts of children being ripped from their parents … and the galling attempts by the architects of those policies to justify them.  The specter of Hitler and his Nazis has been invoked so many times in the past decades it’s become a sort of boy-who-cried-wolf situation.  Would we consider things enough to recognize it if it were happening now, to us?  Is it, really?  I don’t know, but it’s something to think about …

http://www.startribune.com/good-germans-good-americans-where-are-we-headed/486320971/

 

Who are we now? Who … what do we aspire to be?  How much has been lost?  Can we rebuilt what has been torn apart?  I don’t know  … but Leonard Pitts offers much to chew on and ponder:

https://www.miamiherald.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/leonard-pitts-jr/article213879189.html