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. James Joyner says:

    Cut my left hand pretty badly, requiring 30-odd stitches across three different fingers. It should heal fully in a few days but my typing is significantly hampered at the moment.

  2. wr says:

    @James Joyner: Ouch! Hope you heal quickly!

  3. Tony W says:

    Trump looked a little sweaty on the podium on Thursday. I certainly hope his health is holding out.

    Maybe he should do a polar bear swim to cool off?

  4. Jen says:

    @James Joyner: Ouch–I hope your hand heals quickly. That sounds like no joke, I hope you didn’t nick any tendons!

  5. Moosebreath says:

    @James Joyner:

    Ouch!!! I have had stitches many times, but I am not sure whether the total number adds up to 30. Have an easy recovery.

  6. SC_Birdflyte says:

    @James Joyner: Yikes! Get better soon.

  7. James Joyner says:

    Thanks, all. Accident with hedge trimmers and I, uncharacteristically, wasn’t wearing gloves. Thankfully, the cuts are on the fleshy palm side. I’ve got full range of motion and sensation but there’s swelling around the stitches and my hand is still wrapped.

  8. Scott says:

    @James Joyner: I did that a couple of years back helping my youngest with his Boy Scout Pinewood Derby car. Still have the scars on my palm. But boy, did that hurt! Heal well but you’ll probably have a scar to talk about.

  9. Michael Cain says:

    @James Joyner:
    I remember Grandpa Cain out in his little woodshop holding my left hand up in front of my face and saying, slowly as if I wouldn’t understand otherwise, “This. Is. Not. A. Clamp.” Worst damage to my hands has always been due to disregarding that simple rule.

  10. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @James Joyner: Good to hear. A lifetime of carpentry gave me innumerable stitches and more than a few scars. They will tell you that you can’t tear out the stitches. They lie. It’s not easy but I did it once (while working). So take it easy with that hand.

  11. gVOR10 says:

    @James Joyner: Sounds painful. Hope you quickly recover with full motion.

  12. Sleeping Dog says:

    @James Joyner:

    Ouch, sharp objects often have a mind of their own.

  13. CSK says:

    James Joyner, my very best wishes for a quick and relatively painless healing.

  14. Flat Earth Luddite says:

    @Tony W:
    Only if I don’t have to see the footage of him in a swimsuit.

  15. Flat Earth Luddite says:

    @James Joyner: ouchies! Time to find a stunt double.

    Seriously, best wishes for a speedy and low pain recovery.

  16. CSK says:

    @Flat Earth Luddite:

    Rest easy; you’ll never see a shot of Trump in a swimsuit. He knows precisely what a bucket of lard he is.

  17. Kathy says:

    There’s been some unusual seismic activity lately.

    First the quake a few days ago originating in Puebla, as the one from 2017, was so close to the city, that in some places the seismic alert sounded as the grund was already shaking.

    Then there were a few minor quakes originating even closer. Very low intensity, so there was no damage at all. And then this week we had a few more, apparently with epicenters within Mexico City. Again, very mild ones.

    I wonder if this is new seismic activity and how it will progress. And also whether any might be due to volcanic action. There are three known volcanoes nearby. One, Popocatepetl, has been spewing smoke and occasional ash since the 90s. The other two, Iztaccihuatl and Ajusco, have been visibly quiet. I wonder if there are others, which no one knows to be volcanoes because they’ve been quiet for millennia.

  18. gVOR10 says:

    I don’t recall if I mentioned I had a hip replaced last week. As it’s turning out, it’s hardly worth mentioning. An uncomfortable overnight in the hospital, a couple days until home therapy said I could shift from the walker to the cane. A couple days later the surgeon said I could drive and I could lose the cane when I felt comfortable. I felt comfortable right after I drove home. I’m taking a few Tylenol to sleep. I’d try a short walk this afternoon except we’re expecting nasty weather, by FL standards, wind, heavy rain, and a high of only 75.

  19. Jax says:

    @gVOR10: That’s great news about your hip!

    Also, eff you on your “only 75” temperature. It’s currently 3 degrees here, and I’ve decided I’m not going outside til it’s at LEAST 10. 😛

  20. CSK says:


    Nope, you didn’t mention it. I’m very glad your recovery is going so quickly and so well.

  21. Mikey says:

    There is no excuse for this, and it indicates a serious lack of discipline, particularly with the disobedience of the commander’s order to hold fire.

    Hostages Shot by Israel Had White Flag, Early Inquiry Finds (Gift link)

    The three Israeli hostages who were shot and killed by Israeli forces in Gaza on Friday were bearing a makeshift white flag, the military said on Saturday, asserting that the soldiers had violated the military’s rules of engagement.


    On Friday, the three hostages emerged, shirtless, from a building tens of yards away from the Israeli soldiers, bearing a stick with a white cloth, the military said in a preliminary investigation. One of the soldiers, believing they posed a threat, opened fire on the three hostages, killing two of them and wounding the third, the early investigation found.

    The third fled into the building, from which a cry in Hebrew for help could be heard. The battalion commander ordered the forces to hold their fire. But the wounded hostage later re-emerged, after which he was shot and killed, the military statement said.

  22. MarkedMan says:

    @gVOR10: Glad to hear your recovery is going well

  23. DaveD says:

    @Mikey: it’s been reported that female hostages when getting moved are forced to wear hijabs because the idf shoots everything above ground.

  24. Stormy Dragon says:


    I’ve been repeatedly assured that the IDF is going to unprecedented lengths to prevent civilian casualties

  25. gVOR10 says:


    Also, eff you on your “only 75” temperature.

    I was born and raised in North Dakota. I like it south of Tampa.

    And thanks everybody for the kind words.

  26. Mimai says:

    I was at a talk recently. Big name scholar who does legit important work. I’d met him a few times over the years but never seen him speak professionally.

    I found it really off-putting. The self-referential nature of his talk was excessive and distracting. It’s like he had a quota of “I” and “me” and “my” to meet. Or a vendetta against the “I” and “M” keys on his computing device.

    Nary a “we” or “our” despite the fact that his work is inherently interdisciplinary.

    And I’ll be damned if the words “their” or “they” passed his lips. Except to criticize the work of others.

    I held it against him. And I was (am) also a bit disappointed in myself. As I said, he does important work that’s relevant to the playthings in my own sandbox(es). And yet I had to remain vigilant not to be unreasonably critical/dismissive.

    On the plus side, I’ve not had any gnarly injuries or surgeries or other noteworthy hardships in recent weeks. Downward social comparisons are healthy. Sometimes.

  27. CSK says:


    the phrase “unusual seismic activity” would make me exceedingly nervous.

  28. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @gVOR10: That’s good to hear, especially since I’m looking down the barrel of one myself.

  29. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mikey: I guess, “Kill them all and let God sort them out.” has it’s drawbacks.

    That may sound flippant but more often than not, that is the way wars are waged.

  30. Just nutha ignint cracker says:
  31. Kathy says:

    The past two weeks, the earliest I’ve left work was around 10 pm (more often 11:30). Granted many of the rest stay up to 12 or 1 am, but I get back to the office next day around 7:30-8:00, while they come in later. Also, last Wednesday, I had to be in at 5:30 to make the sample delivery at Toluca by 8:00*

    This is absolutely the worse Hell Week has veer been. I haven’t turned on my home PC at all on weekdays, nor streamed a thing until the weekend. Plus I’ve had to come in a few hours on Saturday or Sunday to dela with petty cash and other trivia I just can’t get on during the week. And tomorrow we have to finish a proposal that has to be uploaded before 8 am on Monday, meaning it has to be uploaded tomorrow.

    I think I’ll tell one of the supervisors, the cool and easygoing one, that we all deserve an additional bonus this year.

    On the plus side, as I mentioned before, I got to miss the company Xmas party. BTW, it keeps getting farther away. It used to be held in the parking lot. When the amount of people at corporate grew too large, they moved it to a restaurant a few blocks away. then to a restaurant at a mall nearby. This year it was at a banquet hall farther away (transportation was provided). I expect next year it will be out of town entirely.

    That’s a really small silver lining for a massive black cloud, but still better than nothing.

    *My fault for streamlining the sample process. We gather dried goods, deli meats, and dairy at the office a couple of days before the due date. Then we load them in the van the day of delivery, drive to the meat processing plant nearby to pick up the fresh meat and egg samples, and off we go. It works well, but it requires unholy early hours.

  32. Kathy says:


    I’m still not scared of earthquakes.

    I do get anxious if they go on for what seems to be too long a time, or are particularly strong. But most quakes I either calmly go down the stairs when the alert sounds, or quietly get under the desk if the alert fails for some reason. I put it down to not having suffered any direct harm from one as yet.

  33. JohnSF says:

    Hope it’s going, and goes, well.

  34. JohnSF says:

    Chatted recently to a nephew who’s been in Iceland.
    “Unusual seismic activity” has been rather frequent there lately, and not something you get accustomed to easily.
    Living on or near a tectonic active zone is something I’d prefer to avoid.

  35. JohnSF says:

    What was the talk about, if you don’t mind me asking?

  36. JohnSF says:

    @James Joyner:
    Oh my.
    Increases my preference for hand shears over power trimmer for hedge trimming.
    Hopes for quick healing.
    BTW, have any other old sods round here noticed how slow even small scratches are to heal these days, as opposed to when we wuz young?

  37. Mimai says:


    How to best integrate neurophysiological biomarkers with psychological and sociocontextual data to predict…

    …transition between “acute” and “chronic” [disease state*]

    …response to different treatment modalities

    …other stuff

    *Did not specify for, um, reasons.

  38. gVOR10 says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Wish you well on your procedure. People keep telling me hips are the easiest joint replacement.

  39. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @JohnSF: I think the biggest disappointment of getting older is the 6-12 weeks to recover from bronchitis part. I get bronchitis 2 or 3 times a year and have taken so many antibiotics over the years that my doctor worries about MRSA complications unless I’m really sick.

  40. Mister Bluster says:

    @JohnSF:..old sods
    I’ll bump over 76 in about 2 1/2 weeks. Any cuts and scratches or other rips of the flesh have always healed reasonably quickly all my life. This is still the case. I credit my parent’s DNA for such good fortune. My complaint as I age is that I seem to get stiff if I sit in one place too long. I try to not drop anything like coins as reaching down to pick them up is a chore. My knees make all kinds of noises from the abuse they suffered from climbing telephone poles for 35 years but they still keep my ass up off the ground when I take short walks.
    2024! Happy New Year!