Putin is an Irrational Man

Crazy PutinThe situation in the Ukraine is the perfect demonstration of one of my guiding principles, “You can’t speak rationally to a person who is irrational.” In this case, throwback Vladimir Putin is the irrational one. He was a leader in the Cold War Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) era that believed, “you won’t kill me if you know I will kill you in return.” The acronym MAD was ironic…and not in a good way. If that isn’t irrational, what is?

There is much bloviating to suggest that if Obama had done this or that or something else this would never have happened. There is plenty of counter-bloviating that if George the Lesser hadn’t started two useless wars we’d have the moral high ground to force Putin out. Some people blame Europe for terminal jellyfish spine. Others think the CIA was asleep at the switch. Some think Ukraine is at fault for overthrowing a democratically elected leader. Others prefer The Big Dick Cheney approach, “Nuke the bastards and let the Big Guy Upstairs sort it out.”

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Poobah Classic: Tea and Cookies on the Black Sea

Note: The Poobah is out of town for the next few days attending a senior dinner for Claire Koeneman at Cal Poly Pomona. To keep you entertained. Here’s a Poobah Classic from the archives.


“You ever go in here?” the pilot said to his co-pilot.

“Yeah, it scared the shit out of me. It’s waaaaay short and that down slope’s wicked,” the co-pilot answered. “High pucker factor for sure.”

I had to agree. After hundreds of hours of flight time, I’d never been to a loose gravel runway with an upper end on the down slope of a Turkish mountain, the other end wetted by the Black Sea, and so short it was barely long enough to land our airplane. To say the flying was challenging was an understatement. To say it was frightening was too.

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