President Biden Visits Ukraine and Leaves. Russia Invades Ukraine and Stays.

President Biden made a dramatic trip to the middle of the war zone in Ukraine last week. Did you see him walking courageously with President Zelensky in Kiev? One TV commentator said this was the first time a President entered a war zone since Lincoln traveled to Richmond. Historic. Yes, it’s been more than 150 years, and we elected 30 more Presidents since that risky trip during the Civil War.

Was our President risking his life for a once-in-a-century “photo op?” As they walked, suddenly Air Raid sirens began blaring! Had Putin fired a dozen Cruise Missiles at Kiev? Heart-throbbing scary!

But wait. Why is no one ducking for cover? And none of the Secret Service agents rushed to surround President Biden. Why didn’t they rush him to a bomb shelter?

Well, there were no Cruise Missiles streaking toward Zelensky and Biden. There was no risk of one landing nearby. Someone in the White House had called Putin and informed him of Biden’s visit. And warned Putin that if he dared to attack Kiev during the short Presidential visit, it would make us really mad. The same person asked Zelensky, a former actor, to arrange for the blaring sirens, right on cue.

President Biden made a wise decision to go to Ukraine. Although a lot of Americans, both Republicans and Democrats, are against sending more military equipment to Ukraine, helping the Ukrainians defeat Putin is worth the hundred Billion or even two hundred Billion we’re spending.

Critics are concerned that Putin might fire off nuclear weapons. Who would he attack with a nuclear bomb? Kiev? Paris? Berlin? Washington, DC? Putin is smart enough to know any nuclear bomb dropped on Europe or America would mean death to many Russians. Putin has stashed away over a Trillion dollars. He has no intention of dying or squandering a life of luxury and having to live in exile in a shack in Outer Mongolia.

President Biden continues to confirm support for Ukraine, “As long as it takes.” That sounds determined, but it lacks urgency. Why didn’t he say from the beginning, “Let’s run Putin out of Ukraine as rapidly as possible.” That goal would make Ukraine whole again, including Crimea.

But what about Peace Talks? What would Putin demand to end the invasion? You can bet he would insist on keeping all the territory currently held by Russian troops (and maybe more).

Where would that leave Ukraine? Look at a map. Ukraine would lose about 15 percent of the country, roughly a 100-mile-wide swath of land in the East and Southeast, stretching almost to Odesa. Ukraine would lose all access to the Sea of Azov, meaning that any grain and manufactured goods to be exported from what’s left of eastern Ukraine would have to be sent hundreds of miles by truck or rail to Odesa on the Black Sea.

What would you think about giving up a similar 15 percent of the US? Say, a 100-mile-wide swath along the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts, from Maine to the Texas border?

Historic quotes by Will Rogers:

      “ODESSA, Sept. 2. – Say, these old Russians can really fly. That’s what the Japanese are more afraid of than any other thing, is that these guys will outfly ’em… Who hasn’t pictured Odessa on the Black Sea? Russia and Turkey have been fighting over this for a thousand years.” DT #2520, Sept 2, 1934

      “Russia is a country that looks like it was invented for arguments’ sake. It’s really not, or ever has been a nation: it’s a dispute.” Undated notes

Norfolk Southern Derailment, Presidents’ Day and Jimmy Carter, our 39th President

The wreck of a Norfolk Southern train two weeks ago caused a toxic mess for the 4700 people living in East Palestine, Ohio. (Here it’s pronounced Palesteen.) The derailed cars included ones carrying vinyl chloride. (This chemical is the basis for polyvinyl chloride which we all use every day as PVC plastic products.)

Railroad and government officials decided to burn the toxic liquids to avoid the possibility of exploding tank cars. Burning vinyl chloride produces phosgene, a highly lethal gas.

This environmental disaster has contaminated the air, surface water and soil in the area, reaching across the border into Pennsylvania. While residents continue to suffer sore throats, runny eyes and other discomforts, government officials say their well water is safe to drink and air quality in houses is normal.

The issues with this derailment may take years to resolve. Maybe Norfolk Southern should offer to buy the whole town. Or at least buy out any property owner who wants to leave.

Tomorrow is Presidents’ Day. We used to have Lincoln’s Birthday (Feb 12) and Washington’s Birthday (Feb. 23), but Congress lumped ALL Presidents into one holiday which is always on a Monday.

It honors all 46 Presidents. When a few folks find out this celebration includes Joe Biden, they may get so upset they’ll refuse to buy a new mattress at half off. With Biden’s inflation, it may be higher than the full price 3 years ago.

President Jimmy Carter, who is 98 years old, is in Hospice Care. He was elected President in 1976 after the Watergate scandal forced President Nixon to resign in 1974. He has been outstanding as a Past-President for 42 years, working with Habitat for Humanity and for other civic causes. He and Rosalynn Carter lived their strong Christian faith. He has set a standard of service that may never be matched by future past-Presidents. We pray for comfort for him and his family.

Historic quotes by Will Rogers: (about our Presidents)

          “There wasn’t any Republicans in Washington’s day. No Republicans, no Boll Weevil, no income tax, no cover charge, no disarmament conference, no luncheon clubs, no stop lights, no static (radio), no head winds… My Lord, living in those days, who wouldn’t be great?” DT #803, Feb. 21, 1929

“Lincoln’s famous remark about ‘God must have loved the common people because he made so many of them.’… You are not going to get people’s votes nowadays by calling them common. Lincoln might have said it but I bet you it was not until after he was elected.” WA #82, July 6, 1924

“Coolidge made less speeches and got more votes than any man that ever run.” DT #673, Sept. 21, 1928

“I always did want to see [Herbert Hoover] elected.  I wanted to see how far a competent man could go in politics.  It has never been tried before.” Radio, Apr. 30, 1930

          “(Franklin) Roosevelt wants recovery to start at the bottom. In other words, by a system of high taxes, he wants business to help the little fellow to get started and get some work, and then pay business back by buying things when he’s at work. Business says, ‘Let everybody alone. Let business alone, and we’ll get everything going for you, and if we prosper, naturally the worker will prosper.’” Radio, June 9, 1935

China spies with balloons and TikTok. Chiefs win a Super Game

After the big China spy balloon crossed the country and was shot down off the South Carolina coast, it seems we have a “Balloon-a-Day” hitting our North American airspace. Another one was shot down today over Lake Huron.

Does it seem odd that the Chinese Communists complained about us because we destroyed their spy balloon? Among the pieces recovered from the ocean, one has English words written on it. A friend reminded me that Hunter Biden’s birthday was February 4. Maybe, just maybe, the balloon was intended for him, and the English words are ‘Happy Birthday Hunter.’

Despite Chinese complaints, President Biden assured the world that the spy balloon(s) won’t damage relations between us and China. He seems determined not to hurt the feelings of Xi Jinping, the Chinese President-for-Life. Instead of downplaying the spying, shouldn’t Biden strongly condemn China?

Xi Jinping is so angry at us, he has threatened to retaliate. If really wants to make millions of Americans mad, he would immediately shut down TikTok. Yes, TikTok. Millions of young people and quite a few adults all over this country would protest. If you thought Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) was overwrought when a fellow Squad member was removed from a preferred House committee assignment, imagine her reaction if her millions of followers lost the use of TikTok.

Congress and President Biden know TikTok should be banned. But they are afraid because of backlash, not from China, but from a hundred million Americans obsessed with it.

Remember, Valentine’s Day is Tuesday. Will Rogers did not write or broadcast anything about Valentine’s Day. But he proudly expressed his love for Betty Blake Rogers on Mother’s Day in 1930, “She has been for twenty-two years trying to raise to maturity four children, three by birth and one by marriage… There ought to be some kind of a star given to any woman that can live with a comedian.” (Radio, May 11, 1930)

The Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Philadelphia Eagles 38-35 in the Super Bowl. Quarterback Patrick Mahomes brought them back from a 10-point halftime deficit and they won with a field goal in the closing seconds.

Chinese Communist Balloon Mystery; Hunter’s Computer (Not a Mystery); and the State of the Union (Misery)

On Thursday a groundhog came out of his hole. He saw the shadow cast by the Chinese balloon, and dove back in. Expect 6 more weeks of speculation about the balloon.

By now you’ve heard a slew of Balloon jokes and various reasons the Chinese Communists might send high tech cameras and instruments across our country from Montana to the Carolinas.

Here’s a couple more:

The Chinese own so much of our farmland they used the balloon to check the crops, count their cattle, and prospect for more land to buy.
They checked skiing conditions in the Rocky Mountain resorts. Seeing the slopes were all overcrowded, they gave up and flew over the Smoky Mountains.
They joined the Scavenger Hunt for Top Secret classified documents. Hey, that’s not so farfetched; out of the millions of classified documents, I bet there’s still a few hundred the Communist leaders hadn’t seen yet.

Several Network News folks emphasized that the F-22 pilot brought down the balloon with ONE SHOT. Yes, to fire at a balloon as big as a domed football stadium, lumbering leisurely over a South Carolina beach on a sunny Saturday afternoon, it only required one shot with a Sidewinder heat-seeking missile.

I bet the pilot is being razzed by other fighter jet pilots and crew. Afterall, he’s trained to fly an F-22 at 1500 mph and attack highly maneuverable enemy planes. They’re probably saying, “Wow, only one shot. You’ll be hailed as the next Eddie Rickenbacker or Chuck Yeager.”

Meanwhile, Hunter Biden wound up admitting what you knew more than two years ago. In my “Weekly Comments” on Dec. 13, 2020, I mentioned information the New York Post had published before the election about Hunter being investigated by the FBI since May 2020. The Post had evidence from Hunter’s laptop computer, but it was refuted by 51 former Intelligence Agency leaders (who lied) as “Russian misinformation,” ignored by mainstream media, and censured by Facebook and Twitter. Last week Hunter Biden sued Rudy Giuliani and other Republicans for sharing information, including Chinese and Ukrainian deals, from his computer which he had abandoned at a computer repair shop in 2020.

President Biden will give a State of the Union speech Tuesday. He will likely emphasize new jobs created, low unemployment, and a growing economy. He will definitely highlight the new money for infrastructure, green energy, electric vehicles, chips, and the need for reforming immigration and police. However, if you hear him brag about how he has reduced inflation, food prices, gasoline prices, illegal immigration, drug use, and crime in our big cities, you and a few million others will be yelling at the TV.

If you don’t want to watch the President, there’s always basketball.

Historic quotes by Will Rogers:

“One of the few stipulated duties of the President is that every once in a while, he delivers a message to Congress to tell them the ‘Condition of the Country.’ This message as I say is to Congress; the rest of the country know the condition of the country, for they live in it and are a part of it. But the Senators and Congressmen being in Washington all the time have no idea what is going on in America. So the President has to tell ’em.” WA #371, Feb. 2, 1930