Wednesday 4 December 2019
JOHN BATCHELOR SHOW
Co-hosts: Gordon Chang, Daily Beast, and David Livingston, The Space Show
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 1, Block A: Cleo Paskal, non-resident senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, in re: Allegations of massive fraud and systemic corruption by a __, __. Includes hawala networks (which function nicely because anyone who fails to pay is likely to die). It’s well known that jihadist funds, Murder Inc-type monies, and drugs money flow through hawala all the time. We need India to clean up its enormous corruption, amounting to billions of dollars’ worth, not only to create a strong, healthy India, but also in comparison to China. A country’s national security is intimately connected to its financial condition.
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 1, Block B: Stephen Yates, former deputy national security advisor to Vice President Cheney and currently CEO of DC International Advisory, in re: Taiwan, under constant threat by PRC with its missiles and threats; but a new story: Taiwan watches Hong Kong. There are political landslides, but HK with its fully participatory democracy, voted 80% for the democrats. Taiwan has always known that the one country-two systems model was weak, but now it’s massively shifted in favor of Tsai Ing-wen (DPP). Beijing says: US Navy no longer may make port call in Hong Kong. All right, then where? How about a welcoming island, such as Taiwan? Polling says she currently has a 10-plus per cent lead over her main competitor.
What Beijing is selling doesn't have too many buyers in Taiwan; the KMT (KuoMinTang, [pronounced: gwoh-min-dahng]) is visibly pro-China.
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 1, Block C: Hotel Mars, episode n. Bill Harwood, CBS space news, and Dr David Livingston, The Space Show, in re: EVs (extravehicular) space walks: $2.5 bil cosmic ray detector, Alphamagnetic spectrometer. Big Bang: where’s the antimatter? And what’s the nature of dark matter? Also, dark energy – which is speeding up the expansion of the universe. Hard science that’s largely been missing on the ISS. The Alphamagnetic spectrometer was never designed to be repaired—which nonetheless must be done now to replace the cooling system. Six people on board the station: two women, two Russian cosmonauts, and two . . .
The Boeing Starliner is critical to the ISS. Need a crew of seven, although there are problems. In April 2020, Soyuz will launch with one US astronaut; then no more Americans until the Starliner is up and ready. Any reduction in crew size would be major. These are commercial contracts; both companies and NASA claim that no corners will be cut.
Next milestones in early 2020. By April, there’ll be only three people on board unless [___].
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 1, Block D: Michael Yon, Hong Kong reporter par excellence; in re: Gelatin capsules dipped into powdered hot pepper. I’ve been rear-gassed 400 or 500 times; been in 90 of the major protests. I almost always wear the mask, and have felt not much effect. Bit others have had to go to hospital with horrible skin problems, vomiting, etc. Police have sent mover 10,000 teargas canisters. On 18 November, they shot at least 1,000 canisters that night; police said it was 1,500. Ergo, 10,000 is a wild understatement.
Chinese-made tear gas burns much hotter and is more toxic than American tear gas. Police and liberators both change tactics frequently.
The number of normal arrests in HK has dropped precipitously; perhaps no time for petty crimes these days.
The police on duty are huge. Is this the normal Hong Kong police force? Seems unlikely. Look more like Mainland army.
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 2, Block A: David Maxwell, senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, in re: The undistinguished Dictator established a 31 December deadline. The US certainly won't lift sanctions.
BBC: North Korean missiles and its Christmas gift launch. Our allies South Korea, Japan, and in East Asia. The Iskander AN2, a short-range ballistic missile. Since May, there have been 13 missile and rocket tests. Kim will hold a plenum, then commit another deed: maybe a satellite launch in the belief that that won't cross a red line, calling it a satellite, not an ICBM. US SecDef suspended a mil exercise to promote amity and give space to US dips; got nothing in exchange. I think it's a mistake. We should no longer sacrifice our readiness to someone who has only blackmail, extortion, and the like in his DNA.
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 2, Block B: Alan Tonelson, independent economic policy analyst who blogs at RealityChek and tweets at @AlanTonelson, in re: The latest on the trade talks. He ISM and a research firm named I___ Market. ISM says that US mfrg has been declining, while the other says it’s expanding. Neither measures actual output; no hard numbers. The indicators of US mfrg strength have been decidedly mixed. The China trade war may not be the only problem. Pres Trump has said: If no trade deal by 15 Dec, the US will impose major new tariffs on Chinese-made consumer goods.
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 2, Block C: Bill McGurn, WSJ, in re: Democratic politics, especially Michael Bloomberg.
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 2, Block D: Jed Babbin, former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense; author, In the Words of our Enemies; in re: Many additional ships and up to 14,000 additional troops deployed to counter “the Iranian threat.”
Thousands arrested; the Basiji (bully-boy militia) is active every night; patriots have burned hundreds of tanks, now threaten and attacking fifty military bases. Washington’s tool kit: Presidential findings, which are authorizations of covert actions to do things like intervene and assist. First: US must communicate — provide some Internet coverage; get intell; smuggle iPads and such in to the rebels. Not much time to do this. Thousands of casualties? We don't know.
Europeans except Brits will try to blockade and sabotage the effort to support the freedom-fighters. Iran is the enemy not just of the US but of Western civilization.
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 3, Block A: Salena Zito, Washington Examiner and New York Post, in re: Columbiana, Ohio
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 3, Block B: Salena Zito, Washington Examiner and New York Post, in re: Trump voters 2016: no change in 2020.
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 3, Block C: Richard A Epstein, Chicago Law, NYU Law, the Hoover Institution senior Fellow; in re: Pamela Karlan wagged her finger and lectured the US Congress today. Oberkommander. “If we don't fight the Russians there, we’ll have to fight them here.” Turley was too rational to make it to the headlines.
Our Precarious Pipeline Infrastructure, by Richard A. Epstein; Monday, December 2, 2019 / https://www.hoover.org/research/our-precarious-pipeline-infrastructure
The United States Supreme Court recently agreed to hear United States Forest Service v. Cowpasture River Preservation Association. In that case, the Fourth Circuit, speaking through Judge Stephanie Thacker, found multiple reasons to block the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, LLC (Atlantic) from building, operating, and maintaining its 42-inch diameter natural gas pipeline.
Dickens, Bleak House: “On such an afternoon, if ever, the Lord High Chancellor ought to be sitting here, which he is . . .” — Jarndyce vs Jarndyce!
“Whenever you deal with a pipeline (or a railroad), it’s long and skinny, which makes it susceptible to multiple suits. Need to see who owns surface and who owns subsurface rights.
The ACP is designed to pass about 450 to 600 feet below the Appalachian Trail, and its proposed entry and exit points, both located on private lands, are about 1,400 and 3,400 feet from the trail, respectively.
“This is natural gas from West Virginia to Eastern Virginia, so it must run deep below the Appalachian Trail for one-tenth of a mile. Environmentalists are trying to block natural gas. Who has jurisdiction to give right-of-way? Obviously, the Forest Service.” The Fourth Circuit refused that.
“Nor, as is typical with NEPA reviews, did the Fourth Circuit address the far greater environmental hazards arising from shipping natural gas or crude oil by truck, rail, or tanker.”
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 3, Block D: Richard A Epstein, Chicago Law, NYU Law, the Hoover Institution senior Fellow; in re: This could go on for years – centuries. Even after the prohibition is revered, it still has to go through a NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) review – which is [a nutty procedure]: “You have to take every remote contingency and resolve it before a project may continue.”
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 4, Block A: Project Azorian: The CIA and the Raising of the K-129, by Norman Polmar and Michael White
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 4, Block B: Project Azorian: The CIA and the Raising of the K-129, by Norman Polmar and Michael White
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 4, Block C: Project Azorian: The CIA and the Raising of the K-129, by Norman Polmar and Michael White
Wednesday 4 December 2019 / Hour 4, Block D: Project Azorian: The CIA and the Raising of the K-129, by Norman Polmar and Michael White