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Sunday :: August 28, 2016

Sunday Open Thread

I have nothing to write about. Trump has become boring and predictable. Only the ignorant and persons who can't manage their perceived anger will vote for him.

Things seem stable for the time being in Sinaloa. Yes, a nephew of Zambada-Garcia got killed, but he seemed like a straight arrow working for a seafood company. Maybe it was road rage?

These kidnappings/killings seem to have more markings of Alfredito Beltran Guzman (son of Alfredo Beltran Leyva, for whom the U.S. Government is seeking a Life sentence and a $10 billion forfeiture),rather than CJNG, although some say the two groups re collaborating. Again, if Alfredito Beltran Guzman is behind it, it sounds like a family spat to me, not an attempt to gain physical control over big swathes of territory.

ISIS on the brink of losing Sirte, Libya. The West has been claiming this for months, but it could be true this time. What does it mean? The BBC has a new article examining what's next for ISIS after Sirte.

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Thursday :: August 25, 2016

Thursday Night Open Thread

Our last open thread is already full. Here's a new one, all topics welcome.

A new Quinnipiac University released today indicates Hillary will win huge in November. She's 10 points ahead and Trump continues his downward spiral. Politico reports she's 16 points ahead in Virginia.

If you want to know about the Clinton Foundation, and why Hillary and Bill did nothing wrong, I recommend you pre-order Joe Conasen's new book, Man of the World: The Further Adventures of Bill Clinton. I received an advance copy (which may not be the final version) and it debunks many myths.

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Wednesday :: August 24, 2016

Rudy Giuliani's Glass House

The Washington Post has a good editorial today on Rudy Giuliani's baseless attack on Hillary's health. Shorter version: People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.

It points to different parts of his speech at the RNC that could support a conclusion he is suffering from "nerve damage, stroke or Alzheimer’s disease" and heart disease, and that he's suffered a stroke.

The Post says his baseless attack on Hillary's health is a sign of his "impaired character", if not health. After criticizing his "scurrilous and debunked theories about the Democratic candidate", it says he should see a doctor.

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Wednesday Open Thread:

Busy work day.

Turkey has taken over Jarabulus in Syria. The U.S. aided the effort with airstrikes. According to Twitter analysts, ISIS had already gone, so there wasn't much of a fight. More like they turned the town over. Still, it's the first time Turkey used its own forces for a military operation against ISIS in Syria.

Looks like it was co-leader of Sinaloa Ismael "Mayo" Zambada-Garcia (background here) who conducted the negotiations to free El Chapo's son. Most media now agree both sons were kidnapped. It's still unclear who was behind the kidnappings and what kind of ransom was paid, money or ceding of territory or neither. [More...]

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Sunday :: August 21, 2016

Sunday Night Open Thread

The Olympics are closing tonight. I liked the women's gymnastics but really didn't care for the constant and annoying chatter by the female anchors, or the hyperventilating male anchors (on swimming) on NBC, so I didn't watch much else on that channel. The British announcers on the alternative NBC channel were much better, at least as to the soccer games and cycling.

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

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Saturday :: August 20, 2016

Trump's Many Failures

Vanity Fair reports on Trump's campaign, which has morphed from free-fall to the hospice phase:

As Wisconsin radio host Charlie Sykes summed up Bannon’s appointment: “Trump’s campaign has now entered the Hospice Phase. He knows he’s dying and wants to surround himself with his loved ones.”

The New York Times has a new report on Trump's finances: Trump’s Empire: A Maze of Debts and Opaque Ties. His companies are $650 million in debt and have shadowy backers.

The Chicago Sun-Times has this article on the Trump International Tower in Chicago, and how the commercial space in the 92 floor tower hasn't been leased since it was built in 2008. [More...]

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Mexican Media Report El Chapo's Son Freed, Back in Sinaloa

Riodoce reported this morning it has confirmed that Alfredo Guzman-Salazar, son of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman-Loera and the other five men kidnapped at La Leche Restaurant in Puerto Vallarta have been freed and are back in Sinaloa. Alfredo and his brother Ivan Archivaldo reportedly are both there. According to Sinaloa Press, all six were released unharmed and El Chapo has been informed.

Sin Embargo and now almost all Mexican media, and the AFP, are reporting the same. La Pared reports no additional details are being provided because of the pending extradition request from the U.S. for both sons:

Neither the Attorney General's Office or the Office of Jalisco have issued information regarding the release of the imprisoned son of Sinaloa cartel leader, but a source of the Sinaloa Attorney mentioned that there are indications that the release is correct.

"It is information that can not be confirmed because this person is a fugitive, there are only reports was released by his captors," said the source.

[More...]

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Friday :: August 19, 2016

Friday Open Thread

Here's a new open thread, all topics welcome.

Has anyone seen a Trump statue in person? G-rated comments only please, or use asterisks for anatomical parts.

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6 Bodies Found in Jalisco, None Believed to Be El Chapo's Son

6 bodies were found today in several locations in towns around Guadalajara in the state of Jalisco.

In the El Mirador, in Tonala, police authorities placed the bodies of three men between 25 and 30 years. The first two victims were found inside a vacant lot and another in a gap in the same area. The dead showed signs of torture and gunshot wound.

In Tlajomulco de Zuniga, in the La Teja ranch, the gap La Cajilota, were located the bodies of two people "you encobijadas", one of them apparently female. Another body of a "encobijado" was found in Dr. R. Michel Avenue and Stadium; near the body of the authorities assured a card with a chilling message that further details were not given.

Puerta Vallarta, where 6 men, including Alfredo Guzman-Salazar, the son of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, were kidnapped from La Leche restaurant this week, allegedly by rival cartel CJNG, is also in Jalisco.

The Attorney General of Jalisco says that as of now there is no indication the dead bodies discovered today are related to those kidnapped in Puerta Vallarta. [More...]

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Wednesday :: August 17, 2016

Hillary: There is No "New" Donald Trump

Hillary today on the changes in Donald Trump's campaign staff:

He can hire and fire whoever he wants from his campaign. They can make him read new words from a teleprompter. But he is still the same man who insults gold star families, mocks people with disabilities and thinks he knows more about Isis than our generals. There is no new Donald Trump – this is it.

It may not be quite time to refer to his changes as re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic, but he's getting there.

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Tuesday :: August 16, 2016

El Chapo's Son: Kidnapped in Puerta Vallarta or Not?

It's amazing how bad some news reports are. They just publish without fact-checking. Memo to the AP, AFP and Australia News and other news outlets: This photo is not Alfredo Guzman-Salazar or any son of El Chapo. It's a nobody 23 year old used car salesman named Felix Beltran Leon that police mistook for Alfredo in 2012

The stocky, baby-faced suspect had been presented as the son of Guzman, the chief of the Sinaloa Cartel, and a Navy official described him as a rising operator in the international drug trafficking organization. But Beltran Leon's wife, Karla Pacheco, said he is the father of a toddler and works with his mother-in-law at a used car dealership.

The Attorney General's Office said that "necessary tests" had proved that he wasn't the drug lord's son, but said he would remain under investigation for the guns and money found during his arrest.

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Monday :: August 15, 2016

Monday Open Thread

Here's a new open thread, sorry it's so late in coming. All topics welcome.

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Sunday :: August 14, 2016

More Prominent Republicans Balk at Trump

Is Donald Trump running on empty? More Republicans are jumping ship and refusing to support Donald Trump and planning on voting for Hillary.

More than 200 current and former Republican elected and administration officials, as well as figures from the party apparatus and the conservative media, have said in recent weeks that they simply cannot support Trump, citing his increasingly erratic statements, his lack of policy specifics and his recklessness on the international stage, with many of them saying they'd vote for Hillary Clinton instead.

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Thursday :: August 11, 2016

Thursday Open Thread

Here's a new open thread. All topics welcome.

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Arianna Leaves HuffPo for Wellness Venture

Arianna Huffington is leaving HuffPo to start a new wellness venture called Thrive Global. She announced the new venture in June, but thought at the time she'd be able to do both. Today she said that's simply not possible, so she's leaving Huffpo.

I think this is a great move for Arianna. So many people approaching her age (and mine) are focused on health and well-being. [More...]

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