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Friday, April 7, 2017

I've Seen Better Days

Just consider this a venting post... look elsewhere for substance.

I was seriously bumming last night over the bombing of Syria. It took five beers and late night food to get me to feeling OK for a bit, but the world feels sucky again this morning. I don't want us to be bombing anyone, and the profound unseriousness of this regime leaves me to trust nothing about this particular military "effort," insofar as one can call something one does from a fucking golf resort an effort:


And, according to Matt Yglesias, the only aspect in which this was an "effort" was in creating a photo op:

Some of the people visible in the image seem like naturals for this kind of meeting, including Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer who needs to be able to speak authoritatively about the president’s activities. That the Trump administration is structured around an awkward troika — Reince Priebus and Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner — rather than a traditional chief of staff model is odd, but given the context it’s natural that all three are there.
But the Secretaries of Commerce and Treasury are also on hand, along with National Economic Council director Gary Cohn.
Their briefs have nothing to do with Syria, chemical weapons, or anything else. They just happen to have been in Mar-a-Lago with the president because the original purpose of the trip was to host a summit with Xi Jinping, president of China. The US-China relationship has crucial economic dimensions so Trump wanted his top policymakers on trade and economics to be present at the meeting. Then when the meeting was interrupted by a crisis in Syria, he apparently wanted to round up all the senior officials available and stuff them in a room.
The result is a photo that’s broadly reminiscent of the iconic image of Barack Obama monitoring the strike on Osama bin Laden in the White House Situation Room.

The real victors so far are these guys:

Raytheon, the company that makes the Tomahawk missiles used in the air strikes on Syria by the United States, is rising in early stock trading Friday.
Investors seem to be betting President Trump's decision to retaliate against Syria after the chemical attack on Syrian citizens earlier this week may mean the Pentagon will need more Tomahawks.
The Department of Defense asked for $2 billion over five years to buy 4,000 Tomahawks for the U.S. Navy in its fiscal 2017 budget last February.
Nearly five dozen Tomahawk cruise missiles were launched at military bases in Syria from U.S. warships in the Mediterranean Sea late Thursday.
Raytheon (RTN) wasn't the only defense stock rising Friday either. Lockheed Martin (LMT), which partners with Raytheon on the Javelin missile launcher system and also makes Hellfire missiles, gained nearly 1%.

This can't end well. I can't even work up the Trumpenfreude to enjoy this:


Because even if I were the type to gloat over something involving dropping bombs, we're having bombs dropped on us right now:



It happened, and while I want to believe that the long arc of history bends towards justice, Gorsuch is "Justice" solely in scare quotes. Thirty decades with this skinbag filled with rancid Crisco.

And then the jobs report:

In the third employment report of Donald J. Trump's young presidency, the economy gained just 98,000 jobs in March, lower than the 180,000 expected. It's also down markedly from gains of 235,000 in February and 238,000 in January.
Bouts of bad weather on the East Coast and Midwest poured some cold water on March's numbers, economists say. Likewise, the employment boost during the usually tepid winter months had been driven by unseasonably warmer weather, which led to growth in outdoor industries like construction.
Retail was the biggest losing sector, shedding 30,000 jobs in March.

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