Saturday’s Forum

James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    John Lewis, RIP.

    Former president Barack Obama said Lewis “loved this country so much that he risked his life and his blood so that it might live up to its promise”.

    “I first met John when I was in law school, and I told him then that he was one of my heroes,” he said. “Years later, when I was elected a US senator, I told him that I stood on his shoulders. When I was elected president of the United States, I hugged him on the inauguration stand before I was sworn in and told him I was only there because of the sacrifices he made. And through all those years, he never stopped providing wisdom and encouragement to me and Michelle and our family. We will miss him dearly.

    “It’s fitting that the last time John and I shared a public forum was at a virtual town hall with a gathering of young activists who were helping to lead this summer’s demonstrations in the wake of George Floyd’s death.

    “Afterwards, I spoke to him privately, and he could not have been prouder of their efforts… I told him that all those young people – of every race, from every background and gender and sexual orientation – they were his children. They had learned from his example, even if they didn’t know it.”

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    White House portraits of Bill Clinton and George W. Bush moved from prominent space to rarely used room

    The official portraits of former Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush were removed from the Grand Foyer of the White House within the last week, aides told CNN, and replaced by those of two Republican presidents who served more than a century ago.
    White House tradition calls for portraits of the most recent American presidents to be given the most prominent placement, in the entrance of the executive mansion, visible to guests during official events.
    That was the case through at least July 8, when President Donald Trump welcomed Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. The two stood in the Cross Hall of the White House and made remarks, with the portraits of Clinton and Bush essentially looking on as they had been throughout Trump’s first term.
    But in the days after after that, the Clinton and Bush portraits were moved into the Old Family Dining Room, a small, rarely used room that is not seen by most visitors.
    The portrait of former President Barack Obama is not expected to be unveiled for a formal ceremony during Trump’s first term, a sign of the bitter relationship between the 44th and 45th presidents. Trump has accused Obama of unsubstantiated and unspecified crimes, and has questioned whether Obama was born in the US for years.
    Trump has — less frequently — similarly disparaged Bush and Clinton. In his book, former Trump national security adviser John Bolton wrote Trump “despised” both Bush presidents, and people familiar with the conversations say Trump has lambasted George W. Bush as “stupid.” Trump has similarly castigated Clinton, the husband of his 2016 presidential rival, Hillary Clinton, and suggested he was a bad president.

  3. OzarkHillbilly says:


    Kimberly Costello@KimCostello

    Mary Trump’s book sold more copies in one day than Art of the Deal sold in 32 years. Yowch.
    8:03 PM · Jul 17, 2020·Twitter Web App

  4. Sleeping Dog says:


    Petty is as petty does.

  5. Sleeping Dog says:

    Sorry to start your weekend with a bummer

    With coronavirus antibodies fading fast, vaccine hopes fade, too

  6. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Ken Klippenstein

    As unmarked feds snatch protesters off the streets in Portland, memo leaked to me shows they’ll be deployed indefinitely and in undisclosed locations, with drones “on standby to assist as needed”:

    Pictures of the memo at the link.

  7. CSK says:

    Trump doesn’t much like any previous president. In The Art of the Deal, he describes Carter and Reagan as “empty suits.”

  8. JohnMcC says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Can the declaration of a national emergency be far behind?

    (edit: seems that the FAA has put out a notice to airmen that the center of Portland is a no-fly-zone. Probably the feds have another Predator overhead as they did in Mnpls)

  9. grumpy realist says:

    Yah, Emily Bronte wrote Wuthering Heights.

    I wonder if the “Branton Bronte wrote Wuthering Heights” crowd also insist that Bacon wrote Shakespeare’s plays?

  10. CSK says:

    @grumpy realist:
    You mean “Branwell Bronte”?

  11. SC_Birdflyte says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: To alter a quote from the late Jody Powell, “Being called stupid by Donald Trump is like being called ugly by a frog.”

  12. JohnMcC says:

    Just read this morning for the first time about the Bureau of Land Management acting Director Wm Pendley. Seems he does not believe that the federal gov’t should actually own land. Thinks that every acre should be in private hands. And now in an act of political brilliance, the Trump Administration has forwarded his nomination to be Director to the Senate. The Senators from the mountain west are between Scylla and Charybdis. Senators Daines, McSally and Gardner will either have to vote in opposition to the Administration or to deprive their constituents from enjoying what has always been a birthright to westerners: The freedom to enjoy our wide open spaces.

  13. Liberal Capitalist says:

    How my world has changed.

    As mentioned online yesterday, BA is retiring all its 747’s immediately, stating that many may have already flown it’s last flight.

    As a travel buff, the impact of COVID-19 for me (besides likely having it back at the end of March) has been not traveling… I haven’t been on a plane since March, but I had hoped to fly in the 747 again. Last year, in December, I had flown an American Airlines mileage run that included 3 British Airways 747 flights.

    Back when there was a Northwest Airlines, I had flown in the upper cabin of a KLM 747, so I made sure that my BA business class flight would include the upper cabin again.

    Image that H U G E 4-engine plane, and you have this private area with 20 lay-flat seats and 2 flight attendants dedicated to just those passengers. The food and service was fantastic. And even though I flew to the other side of the world (Dubai) and back in three days, it felt more like a relaxing vacation rather than a stressed experience.

    It’s funny the things that remain a life memory, but the 747 will be one of this where I will be able to say “yes, I did that”. (A surprise trip on a DC3 was also one of those experiences: Imagine naugahyde armchairs and curtains on windows! The flight crew dressed in 1940’s historical uniforms, just for kicks.)

    Next weekend, I am taking a flight to the Pensacola area, as I’m shipping two cars and a motorcycle down to our small near-beach home and I need to be there to receive them. I’ve booked “first class” on American, which is like economy-plus on any international carrier. While I threw an extra leg into the mix to get the bonus miles (DEN-DFW-CLT-PNS), the experience of flying in July 2020 compared to December 2019 will… well, it will just be a threatening disappointment, I’m sure.

    I am sure that every generation says this, but it certainly feels that our world has not only taken a huge step backwards, but that there are many that actively go out of their way to make it worse. Intentional idiocy.

    I’d love end this commentary on an upbeat note, but I can’t.

  14. CSK says:

    @Liberal Capitalist:
    The first flight I ever took was on a PanAm 747. It was a different world. I’m glad I’m old enough to remember when flying was actually a fun part of the trip rather than something to be suffered through.

  15. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Liberal Capitalist: @CSK: I’ve only flown a 747 once. From economy, it’s the same as any other wide body jet. Korean Air service, on the other hand, was exceptional.

    I still won’t pay 20% extra to fly Korean, though.

  16. Mister Bluster says:

    Art for Arts Sake
    The Bunker and The Poser.
    Living sculpture of our Chief Executive.

  17. Tyrell says:

    The enigmatic and mysterious Chupacabra is being seen again, this time in Alabama and the Carolinas. A strange, but a relatively shy and passive creature, some have been captured. It is not a deer, dog, or some cat. It has some mean looking teeth, but there are no known attacks on people.
    (Apologies if I have already reported this)

  18. OzarkHillbilly says:

    I gotta leave this here:

    tyler hogge
    Direct hit
    I think it’s my favorite video I’ve ever posted

    Damn. F’n allergies acting up like crazy around here.

  19. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Tyrell: some have been captured.

    Oh well then, proof should be easy. You know, a scientific journal or something, not a video from toothless bearded Jimmy Ray Bob.

  20. An Interested Party says:

    The Senators from the mountain west are between Scylla and Charybdis.

    Trump alone has done so much to help the Democrats…if Clinton had won in 2016, Republicans may have gained substantial majorities in both the House and the Senate by simply opposing her, but now, thanks to Trump’s incompetence, the Democrats have a real opportunity to take the presidency and both houses of Congress…thanks, Donald…

  21. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: @Tyrell: the interest of science. 😉

    (looks mostly like a dog to me, but I dunno from chupacabras)

  22. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:
    Whatever it is, it’s odd looking.