A Campaign Platform

I’ll be brief. The Progressive-Democrat Presidential candidate and current President Joe Biden, has a legislative and administrative history of

  • open to nonexistent borders, epitomized by his failed effort to codify the entry of 1.4 million or more illegal aliens per year (assessed at weekly intervals) before a President would be authorized to do anything toward closing our border
  • enormous inflation that’s only just abating, although the new price levels remain much higher than extant in the prior administration, with no sign those elevated price levels are abating
  • real wages falling relative to those extant in the prior administration as nominal wage increases, with some excursions to the topside, in the main have been smaller than price increase increases due to inflation
  • denigrating Israel as it fights for its survival against the terrorists Hamas and Hezbollah—and against their masters, Iran—while moving to protect Hamas by demanding cease fires that only benefit Hamas
  • encouraging continued butchery in Ukraine by slow-walking and blocking weapons Ukraine needs while coddling the invader barbarian as sanctuary against serious counterattack by Ukraine
  • appeasing Iran in its desperation to get Iran to let this administration back into the failed Iran nuclear weapons development deal
  • appeasing the People’s Republic of China regarding that nation’s seizure and occupation of the South China Sea and its threats against the Republic of China
  • meekly accepting PRC military and spy bases in Cuba, elsewhere in the Caribbean, South American, in even more meek abrogation of our erstwhile long-standing Monroe Doctrine
  • active deprecation of our energy production and energy independence through constant attacks on and blocks of coal, oil, natural gas—even liquid natural gas export—in favor of unreliable wind and solar farms

Those are just the high points; the full list is quite extensive.

This is why Biden and Harris won’t run on policy and how their policies for the next term would benefit Americans. Instead, their campaign platform is personal; it’s focused against a man. They don’t even argue against his policies, past or future—only that the man himself is bad.

This lack of a coherent, reasoned platform is instructive of the capacity of the Progressive-Democratic Party to govern.

This is the Barbarian…

…that Progressive-Democrat President Joe Biden keeps coddling with his slow-walking and blocking the weapons Ukraine needs and with his insistence on protecting Russia as sanctuary against Ukraine attack except under the most narrow and useless circumstance.

The third explosion knocked the 23-year-old to the ground, when a Kh-101 rocket fired from a Russian jet fighter detonated its 900-pound warhead over the hospital.
[Junior doctor Olena] Hovorova survived unscathed and rushed to help some of the 32 people wounded in the attack, including eight children. The strike killed a doctor and a nurse and pulverized a toxicology unit where the walls are decorated with pictures of smiling whales and starfish.

And

Dr Oleh Holubchenko was operating on a 5-month-old child with a cleft palate when he was thrown across the room by an explosion.
When Holubchenko came to some minutes later with shrapnel and shards of glass embedded in his back, he said his first thought was: How is the child?

(As it happened, the child survived the barbarity, was transferred to another hospital, and its operation successfully completed.)

The hospital, set in the heart of Ukraine’s capital, takes in around 18,000 children each year. Many of them live for weeks on the premises with their parents as they await lifesaving treatment ranging from bone-marrow transplants to chemotherapy.

That’s why the barbarian targeted it.

Biden’s response? He announced five additional air-defense systems from Ukraine’s Western allies. Count ’em—five. How many missiles and reloads are accompanying those systems? Why weren’t they in place months—years—ago? Why are the F-16s that may only just be arriving, fighters that could have shot down the Russian aircraft launching rockets along with cruise missiles, air-to-ground missiles, and guided bombs, not in place already, years ago? Why are ex-Warsaw Pact, now NATO members’, MiGs not transferred at all—even if only to serve as parts suppliers for Ukraine’s then-existing fleet of Migs?

Why is Biden still protecting the barbarian from counter attack on his own soil? Releasing the use of our long-range ground-to-ground systems to attack barbarians massing for their own immediate assault just across the border is a nearly useless permission. Ukraine needs to be able to use its systems to attack storage—fuel, ammunition, armor—depots, airbases and the aircraft sitting on them, troop barracks and assembly locations, wherever the barbarian sets them up.

Biden says No, Ukraine must not be allowed to win. Ukraine must only be encouraged to not lose—to keep its soldiers in the field being maimed and killed. To keep its women and children constantly exposed to barbarian atrocities. To keep its hospitals as targets for the barbarian.

Always the Case

American superior weapons technology, used by the Ukrainian military to very good effect against Russian soldiers and equipment, no longer work so well.

 …the M982 Excalibur munitions, developed by RTX and BAE Systems, became essentially useless and are no longer employed….

And

 Russian electronic countermeasures have significantly reduced the precision of GPS-guided missiles fired by Himars systems….

And

 …the Ground-Launched Small Diameter Bomb munition, manufactured by Boeing and Sweden’s Saab, has failed altogether after its introduction in recent months….

Yet,

 Some of the other Western precision weapons, provided more recently, continue to strike high-value Russian targets.

But that won’t last. It’s an old an hoary maxim in the military that the enemy gets a vote, too, on the battlefield. Adaptation to the other side’s weapons is just one of those votes, and it’s just a real-time battlefield instance of the overall arms race between adversary nations.

Of course Russia is adapting in the particular case.

This is just one more foreseeable consequence of the terrible immorality of Biden’s slow-walking and outright blocking of the weapons Ukraine needed, and needs, to win its war of survival outright, and to do so quickly. Russia—sanctuary Russia in Biden’s foreign policy—was donated time to adapt to the weapons and to find and deploy counters to them.

Aside from Biden’s bloody immorality, this also is one more reason we need to step up our pace of innovation and vastly increase our ability rapidly to produce what we innovate.

Yes, But It’s Not Enough

Leon Panetta and Mike Gallagher are on the right track in sounding the alarm regarding our nation’s lagging behind our enemies in military strength and in the pace of scientific and weapon technology development.

They closed their op-ed, though, with this:

To prevent cold-war competition from devolving into a hot war, it’s time to innovate as if the free world depended on it. The path forward must be paved with investments in technology and undergirded by infrastructure built for innovative national-security research and education.

Innovate, certainly. Develop an infrastructure conducive to producing the scientists, engineers, and other researchers necessary for innovation, absolutely. That’s not enough, though. Panetta and Gallagher also emphasized that we are unlikely to adopt industrial policy or match our enemies in sheer production volume.

That’s the Critical Item remaining leg of our rebuilding: we have to produce the things we innovate, and we have to produce them in sufficient numbers that they can overcome the numerical superiority of our enemies’ production. That requires rebuilding the manufacturing facilities and building new such facilities that are necessary for us to produce our innovations. We can no longer expect our automobile manufacturers simply to adjust their assembly lines to produce tanks instead of trucks—both of those today are too complex and too different from each other.

The war(s) we fight against Russia and the People’s Republic of China will be fought with the men and equipment in being and on scene. The pace and weapons effectiveness of modern war will not allow much at all in the way of American reinforcements from overseas, and it will not allow any—zero—combat loss replenishments from our factories, whether extant or starting to be built when the first enemy bullet is fired at us.

A Major Defense Contractor…

…and powerful defense lobbyist…skates?

Boeing, whose pair of 737 MAX software-related crashes and a range of aircraft manufacture/assembly failures have cost or endangered lives, is being allowed to plead guilty to a single count of conspiracy to defraud the US.

In truth, many of the assembly failures being laid off on Boeing in the rush of negative publicity are maintenance failures by the airline companies that own the aircraft involved. And, the manufacture/assembly failures are not factors (at least officially) in the plea agreement in progress—that’s limited to the MAX software-related crashes.

It’s also the case that the second MAX crash was more pilot error than it was a Boeing failure, though Boeing’s handling of the software failure involved in both MAX failures figured in the pilot screwup.

Those notwithstanding though, the plea—offered by the government, not by Boeing—seems a wrist slap.

[P]rosecutors have asked the company to pay a second $244 million criminal fine and spend $455 million over the next three years to improve its compliance and safety programs. Boeing also must hire an independent monitor for three years to oversee those improvements.

On the other hand,

The deal also does not cover any current or former Boeing officials, only the corporation.

The wrist slap in the present case compares to a 2021 “settlement” between Boeing and the government over the same MAX software question in which Boeing was fined a similar $243.6 million and paid an additional $2.5 billion to settle the case.

This, too:

Pleading guilty creates business challenges for Boeing. Companies with felony convictions can be suspended or barred as defense contractors. Boeing is expected to seek a waiver from that consequence. The company was awarded Defense Department contracts last year valued at $22.8 billion, according to federal data.

Getting the whole case boiled down to a single felony count, combined with the small fine and the pro forma business about compliance and being monitored, make it much easier for Boeing to get the waiver. The magnitude of the just signed defense contracts—who would the government get to replace Boeing on the tasks contracted?—also give Boeing leverage in getting the waiver.