Syria’s shoot-down of a Turkish F-4 Phantom fighter jet, once an interceptor and fighter-bomber when it was new in the ’60s and ’70s and now used for training, surveillance, and reconnaisance, may escalate what is already a dangerous situation. Turkey is a NATO member, part of the collective security agreement with Western Europe and the US, making this even more complex if the pact is invoked.
** NEW COLUMNS COMING UP … CALIFORNIA STORY: “THE SLOW BORING OF HARD BOARDS” IN AN ERA OF LIMITS and SUPERHEROES AND A BIG YEAR OF ACTION CINEMA.
** OBAMA THIS WEEKEND. President Barack Obama is in Washington.
He has received the regular intelligence and economic briefings in the Oval Office.
Obama has no scheduled public events on the weekend.
Here’s what his schedule looks like for the week ahead.
On Monday, Obama will travel to Portsmouth, New Hampshire and Boston, Massachusetts where he will attend campaign events. Obama will RON in Boston.
On Tuesday, Obama will travel to Atlanta, Georgia and Miami, Florida to attend campaign events. Obama returns to the White House in the evening.
On Wednesday, Obama will meet with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed to discuss various security, economic, energy, and environmental issues. The crown prince, who is Obama’s age, holds a host of top posts in the United Arab Emirates, a principal Gulf Arab power, including his roles as deputy commander of the military and special advisor to the his brother the president. The UAE and other Gulf Arab powers are increasingly key US allies. That evening, Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama will host a picnic for Members of Congress at the White House.
On Thursday and Friday, Obama will attend meetings at the White House.
As usual, there is plenty of flexibility in the schedule for response to emerging events, and as usual Obama’s public schedule bears little reflection of his crisis management activities.
While Obama passes a deceptively quiet weekend in the White House — where in reality he is monitoring and to some degree managing activities around the delayed Egyptian presidential vote announcement and the Syria crisis, which may have entered a dangerous new phase — conservative Republican challenger Mitt Romney is holding a Conservapalooza for his super-rich backers in picturesque Park City, Utah.
The 2002 Winter Olympics, which Romney ran, were in large part staged there.
The Deseret News reports on his retreat for very big Republican funders and fundraisers.
In sharp contrast to Obama, Romney refuses to release the names of his top fundraisers or to reveal his fundraising events. But this article begins to poke behind the veil.
In his weekend video/radio address, President Barack Obama discusses the urgent need for Congress pass his “To Do List.” That’s a little joke. Actually, he does not. Obama, acknowledging the painfully slow economic recovery, urges to act now on two common sense measures to help middle class Americans: Preventing interest rates on federal student loans from going up and putting hundreds of thousands of construction workers back to work on needed infrastructure projects.
Romney is still trying to deal with a detailed Washington Post report on how he and Bain Capital profited greatly by promoting outsourcing and offshoring of jobs in the portfolio of companies they backed.
Bain Capital, not surprisingly, was a king of the outsourcing trend.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, by the way, is in Latin America for more solidarity meetings with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who vows support for Iran against the West, and Chavez allies in the region.
Obama is monitoring several geopolitical crises involving the Arab Awakening, Iran and Israel, Iraq, AfPak, and North Korea.
Military Crisis Zone Times: The Arabian Gulf is ten hours ahead of Pacific time, and Afghanistan is eleven and a half hours ahead of Pacific time.
** FROM THE JERRY FILES. Governor Jerry Brown is in Northern California.
He has no scheduled public events this weekend.
His budget compromise is on track for Tuesday votes in the state legislature.
** A RUGGED TIME FOR OBAMA’S BIG GEOPOLITICAL PIVOT. … From my June 22nd essay.
** THE “FAIR SHOT” VS. THE “TO DO LIST” — A BIG REVEALING BLAH IN THE PRESIDENTIAL RACE. … From my June 20th column.
** THE ENLIGHTENMENT DIVIDES AMERICAN POLITICS. … From my June 16th essay.
** LOOKING FORWARD FROM MAD MEN‘S MEANDERING SEASON 5: YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE (ONE CAN ONLY HOPE) … From my June 13th essay.
** MIDWAY: 70TH ANNIVERSARY OF ONE OF HISTORY’S MOST PIVOTAL BATTLES CAME IN MIDST OF OBAMA’S BIG STRATEGIC PIVOT TO THE PACIFIC. … From my June 9th essay.
** MAD MEN: THE ANVIL HAS LANDED. … From my June 6th review.
** JERRY BROWN FOR PRESIDENT + 20. … From my June 6th essay.
** FIAT LUX, WILLARD! … From my June 1st column.
** MAD MEN: CONTROVERSY AS JOAN LOWERS HERSELF TO RISE, PEGGY EXITS ANTICLIMACTICALLY (AND SCDP GETS ITS HALO CLIENT). … From my May 30th essay.
** THE NEW SPACE ERA TAKES BIG STEPS FORWARD. … From my May 30th essay.
** FROM GOVERNATOR TO MOONBEAM. … From my January 3rd, 2011 feature.
** OBAMA: RIDING WITH HISTORY. (NOTE: As Barack Obama was inaugurated as the 44th president of the United States, this column was the featured column on the top of the front page of the Huffington Post.) … From my January 19th, 2009 Huffington Post column.
** 24/7 LIVE TV NEWS FEED FROM AL JAZEERA. With the US entangled in major military operations in the region, and the Arab awakening underway, it’s valuable to keep up with news and perspectives from the leading Middle Eastern-based TV news network. Click here for a live TV news feed on your computer. The NWN live link to AJ does not constitute an endorsement of the channel’s views. It’s presented as an otherwise unavailable new media window.
** 24/7 LIVE TV NEWS FEED FROM RUSSIA TODAY. Russia has re-emerged as one of the world’s great powers. Click here for a live TV news feed on your computer from the Russia Today channel. The NWN live link to RT does not constitute an endorsement of the state-run channel’s views. It’s presented as an otherwise unavailable new media window.
** TRACK GLOBAL AND NATIONAL ENERGY PRICES IN NEAR REAL TIME VIA BLOOMBERG ENERGY MARKET WATCH. Having crashed over $147 for yet another record on July 11th, 2008, crude oil closed on Friday at $79.76 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
This is up about $46 from the low of $34 per barrel prior to enactment of the Obama economic recovery program, reflecting a low point in global economic activity, and down about $34 per barrel from the price at the time of the Osama bin Laden raid.
Your posts are welcome in the Forum. You can send me a private tip by clicking on the “Contact” button in the upper right.